Uh oh... now what?
She closed her vacation trip with, "...I actually am quite fond of the idea of going somewhere and just running for fun everyday."
When Kathy and I separated I started down Mainline trail and that phrase came back to me... "just running for fun everyday." I rarely do any serious running. I turned down Tunnel to check for rhodies with blooms. The bright pink and reds seem to be late in arriving this year. Tunnel is a horseshoe off Mainline and is half down, half up--the serious thing came back as I ran all the way up; not a steady chug, but a slight bit of pushing all the way up.
If I was serious about this I would go around on Hughes Delight instead of Emilie's. No, I need to run Emilie's to see if there are any downed trees and to check for rhodies. I'll just go zippy-toed fast and concentrate on, Uhhh, six-tenths of a mile... twelves would be really good on these roots and twists and turns... six times twelve is 84, which is 8:24. The race is on. First stumble is on the toe grabber about thirty yards in. I have been tripping on it for five summers. This might be the summer I get a Pulaski and send it on its way. The climb out of Emilie's kettle seems longer this year; a trait the trails have been displaying in other parts of the park too.
Oops, a flash of red and I hit the brakes. A rhodie! The bud is barely opened, but the deep red foretells of our forest changing colors soon. That out of the way I can resume... how much time did I "lose"? At Fisher Ridge I glance down and note I did not hit the start button. Oh well, I did run really fast and it was probably a PR for that trail on a Wednesday and it was definitely serious enough for TnC to feel challenged. The hum of the power lines, the warmth of the sun, and the densely rooted section of trail across to Pigeon Ridge was attacked with furrowed brow and clenched fists... until I realized my hands were closed, then I relaxed enough for my hands to unclench. On another day I would do the twists and turns and log jumps of Spencers, but not today. I knew it to be five tenths and a few feet to the road.
I carefully punched the still-showing-zeroes start button and reentered concentration mode. The race across, down to the bottom, and the climb to Partridge Point road was on. There are not many rhodies along here. One raven seemed to cheer me on. In and out of shadows went my shadow. Roots were barely cleared as my toes searched for traction on the descending trail. I can see the hole in the trees where the trail ends, but I can hear my breath and it is much more ragged than it should be. Serious is she--okay, but if I collapse out here in the forest I'm going to scratch TnC in the soft dirt of the trail.
Kathy was coming from the Cedar Hollow and asked how much longer I wanted to stay out. I looked at my watch; my running stop watch--ratz--forgot to check. Take my word for it. That section was seriously fast. I said I wanted another thirty minutes and we went in opposite directions again.
Thirty minutes? Okay... down Raider Creek, across Upper Shepherd's Crook, back on Brave heart... have to push to make that in thirty minutes, but I can do it if I pay some serious attention.
Thanks for the lovely account, John M. Felt like I was there on the trail with ya
And by the way, I had one of my most fun runs in a LONG time last night. The best part, and what really got me going, was the scent of the air just before a hard rain (it never actually rained though the sky threatened otherwise.) No trails, but I certainly ran like the wind.
My Blog: trailsandcocktails.com
I Run for Oiselle
“In every walk with nature one receives far more than he seeks.” -- John Muir
running under the BigSky
good stuff John I'm pretty sure, at least in part, this is why we chose to run on trails. It's hard to turn a blind eye to Nature's beauty when it's engulfing us with every stride.
2/2/13 Uwharrie Mountain Run 20 mile √
3/2/13 Joshua Tree NP traverse 38 miles (not a race :)) √
6/8/13 Pengally Double Dip 1/2 Marathon √
6/22/13 Trail Rail Run 50k √
7/13/13 Devil's Backbone 25 mile- had to cancel :(
8/3/13 Elkhorn 50k √
9/14/13 the Rut Run 50k √
10/6/13 Blue Mountain 30K √
... how much time did I "lose"?
I liked this...makes me think of all the time I've "lost" out on the trails. Excellent.
Are you doing this for world peace? For the homeless? Are you running for women's rights? The environment?
They couldn't believe somebody would do all that running for no reason.
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