I did it! I’ve crossed over to the dark side!
And I loved it!
My dad and I recently went down to Tyler State Park (Texas) to run the Running the Rose – we liked this one because of the location and the variety in distances. Dad did the 7K and I did the 11 miler, which were perfect for us. If you’re a trail runner, you know that 7K easily translates to a 10K and an 11 miler easily translates to a half marathon.
So, how was it?!
Wow. We enjoyed every minute – from pulling into the state park, to the peanut butter jelly sandwiches at the finish. Tyler State Park was GORGEOUS. It was like entering some other universe. Tall trees and nature as far as the eyes could see…
The people were friendly, family was camped out to see their loved ones finish a long race, volunteers were lending a hand in every direction, and the weather was perfect. Chilly, but not freezing – that *just right* running weather.
Dad watched as I took off with the 11 milers. The 7K started shortly after, meaning we would finish around the same time. Wow – trails are MUCH DIFFERENT than the road. I knew this going into it, but I was amazed at how much focus was required. Passing people is also more of an ordeal. I had to get used to the “on your left!” thing.
In fact, I was too nervous, or polite (?) – I can’t think of a better word – to pass anyone at first. I was in the back of the pack, feeling great and wanting to GO! I finally started finding good spots to pass. Then I realized I should give people some sort of notice, and I hear someone else shouting, so I started saying “on your left!” and most people didn’t mind, other seemed annoyed, but I wanted to run my own race at a pace that felt good! After a while, I was towards the front of the pack and had space to run. You may not know it by my pace, but if you’ve ever run trails, you know that pace doesn’t mean a thing!
I felt like I was flying at an 11-minute mile! Every step was like solving a puzzle, and I gained almost 1,200 ft. of elevation throughout the run. These were the kind of trails I hike in Colorado and get tired just walking them!
THE BEST PART OF THE RUN…
I felt strong, I felt like part of a community, and the views were AMAZING. Time went fast – I crossed the finish line and wasn’t sure that it was really the end.
THE UNBELIEVABLE PART…
I WAS SO. SORE.
For nearly a WEEK, I couldn’t even work out. At all. I’m *finally* feeling back to normal! It has truly humbled me. I never get sore from running – something my body is very used to. On ROADS. On the roads, I can run a 50-mile week, race a half marathon, and feel fine the next day. On TRAILS, apparently, I can run almost 11 miles and my legs go haywire. I admit I should’ve gotten used to the new surface. But I just stayed in my comfort zone
So, here’s to getting out of my comfort zone more. The question is, when will the next one be?!
What’s been your favorite trail run or race?