Saturday, June 12, 2010

Trail Running

Not the best picture, but not the worst place to get in a good run either. I started trail running because of shin splints. Nasty, tiny knife-like pain in my left shin right above my ankle. Leaving behind the neighborhood roads and heading for the hills (literally) seemed like a good move. It was, it has been. Yesterday the mid-80s temps and cloudy skies made the weather perfect for a trail run. I headed out right after work to Lunch Loop / Tabaguache and decided to run up Eagle's Tail, over to High Noon, then all the way across the ridge and down Kurt's Lane. It's really only about 3 miles, but it's 3 trail miles which, the way I figure it, is at least 4 or 4.5 road miles.

Trails present all kinds of new obstacles: rocks to hop over, sandy or rocky steep hills to crank up or run down, trees to snake past, and of course, bikers and other hikers all on a single track course. The first 20 minutes saw me running for 5 and walking for 2 repeatedly. I told myself if I ran up every hill on this trail I could have all the beer and pasta I wanted afterwards! So I cranked it up all 5 hills on Eagle's Tail and recovered in between. (I'd post a map of the area, but my map is old. Eagle's tail can be found by taking the main Tabaguache trail out to the first intersection, taking a right there towards Pet-Y-Kes and Eagle's, and then taking another right at the next intersection).

Once I was through the hills I only made one more stop on my entire 52 minute route. That was after running up the hill to the top of the ridge and was mostly because I was letting some bikers get ahead of me. The rolling almost-all-downhill section from the ridge top to the parking lot makes for fast time and tricky footwork. Still, you'll never hear me say that I hate running. How could I hate running when the hills and views around me are so amazing? How could I hate it when the whole 52 minutes is spent leaping over and around obstacles, taking my mind off any problems or issues I might have? If you run and you hate it, you should find a new sport. I run and I love it. Even when it hurts.

Today's weather is proving to be difficult for biking. Rain, clouds, rain, clouds...we might actually have to REST for a whole day!


Accidental Artist said...

Haha! I REALLY DO hate running! I am so glad its not my sport! If it weren't for its excellent benefits, I'd NEVER do it!
...but, I do like trail running! We ran nearly the whole way back down Mt. Garfield (minus the super rocky climbing parts), even the really steep last section! And Independence Monument is so much fun to run as well!
WOOT for trail running!

Jewels said...

I keep thinking Independence would be nice...maybe tough on the way up, but awesome on the way down!

I like both trail and road running, but for different reasons...I like the obstacles on the trails, and the easy-to-track miles of the road.