Friday, September 12, 2008

Transcendant Trail Run

(Will update with pictures when camera is charged up!)

I did my last long run yesterday from Huddart thru Phleger, over the Skyline Trail to Wunderlich and back again. All in all it was about 20 miles I think. My Nike iPod thingy crapped out in the middle somewhere and was on "pause" for some unknown reason so I lost some mileage there. It's just details....doesn't really matter.

Yesterday was glorious, gorgeous, spectacular on the trail! I was a little creeped out up on the Lonely Trail all by myself, but I eventually got over it with some endorphins and the beauty of the redwoods plus the perfect weather. I didn't pass a single other runner on the trail through my whole run! That in itself didn't make it a great run, it was just strange to see no one at all. I wouldn't have minded some company.

I noticed that the big climb of the Miramontes Trail just before the Lonely Trail intersection was a lot easier than when I ran it before. It's a tough, steep climb -- but this time I wasn't winded at all. All of the climbs have suddenly become easier! I almost felt like I was floating up the mountain! I must have lost weight and gained some fitness. It's funny how it seems to happen suddenly, out of no where. I've been training hard for months, but the changes seem to come over night and surprise me.

I love this feeling of fitness! It's better than any tequilla drink or ice cream sundae. It's freedom. That's what I like the best about it. I'm suddenly unencumbered by my lungs or dragging my fat body up a trail huffing and puffing. To dance along the trail is a feeling that I've missed since 2000. That day that I broke my leg I was having a fabulous trail run, ironically my husband was huffing and puffing behind me not having a great day. Luckily he had enough in the tank to carry me out to the car.

And the freedom to have no fear on the trails! More than fitness, more than laziness it's fear that has kept me from going very far. I had to get over the fear of breaking my leg again or doing something else damaging out on the trail. The leg break was a freak accident, not something that normally happens. But now I carry my cellphone and a bunch of other things in my water pack incase of emergency, so I'm prepared. And when I run alone I'm cautious on the downhills and very conscious of every single footfall.

I do fight the eebie jeeies about mountain lions. I have seen mountain lions, so it's not a baseless fear, BUT -- they've never done anything to me or even hinted at doing anything to me. Of the encounters that I've had (3) two were clearly bored by our prescence and the third was scared out of his wits. I welcome the other animal encounters, coyotes, bobcats, deer, etc. I don't listen to my iPod when I run trails, I like to be aware of everything around me (and hear the birds sing and the squirrels chatter)

I finished my long run strong! That's what I'm proudest and happiest about. I actually sprinted in and didn't feel strained or super tired. I really concentrated on my pose form throughout and I think that this made it the great run that it was. I have confidence that next weekend will be good for me. I can't wait until a 50k training run is no problem for me...a walk in the woods! (Yes, I secretly want to be Catra).

Today I feel pretty good. My lower back is tight and needs stretching, but that seems to be my ailment of the month and was not caused by the run. So now it's taper time. Low mileage...take it easy 'till next Saturday... :)