I went trail running for the first time today. Can you tell?
Our local trail running club had its Summer Classic this afternoon. My friend had asked me a while back if I wanted to do it. Always ready to try something new in the world of running, I said yes. Plus, they would be passing out free ice cream at the end. Well, that was before I knew it was going to be well over 90 degrees with an even higher heat index.
I spent the evening yesterday and this morning making sure I was good and hydrated for the run today. But, just in case, I texted my friend to see if she still was up for the run. I mean, the Weather Channel was advising people not to do anything taxing or athletic outside due to poor air quality and the heat. Her response? “If it gets too bad, we can walk it.”
So we went. Despite the heat, I was looking forward to it. And for good reason: Turns out, I love it. The woods were gorgeous. I didn’t take my music with me, and I most definitely didn’t miss it. The sounds of feet pounding against the dirt trail was music enough for me. And, I didn’t feel any pressure to go fast, so I listened to my body and just enjoyed being outside. I stopped for water when I needed it and fast-walked up the hill if I felt like I needed to. I wasn’t able to keep up with my speedy friend and ended up finishing the 2.19-mile course in 26 minutes, or just under a 12-minute pace.
For my first stab at trail running, on an unfamiliar trail and on the hottest day we’ve had all summer? I’ll consider it a win. And you know what? Ice cream never tasted so good. I think I’ll be investing in some trail shoes so I can join The Dirty Herd on its Sunday evening runs.