I did my first trail run this morning and I LOVED IT! It was hard, I’m not going to lie. The loop was 6.2 miles (or 6.33 when you end up wandering off the trail for a ways… not that I did that this morning, nope… not at all!) and according to my Garmin had 1800 feet of ascent (and 1800 feet of descent to match).
The stretches that were hard-packed dirt were great, I was able to move along at a good speed. The sections that were really just long stretches of large, loose rocks were much harder. And the steeper uphills with lots of rocks, those required more walking than running.
If I’m going to continue doing this though, I need to get some trail shoes. My ankles kept rolling and were pretty much shot by the end of the run. We also had a point where we came out to a parking area about 4 miles in, which kind of gave a couple of the false impression that we were done, so picking up for another 2 miles of uphill was rough.
Most of my running goals are in road races, so trail running isn’t necessarily something I need to train at with great frequency right now. But it definitely works muscles differently and is a great form of cross-training!
(The Super Bowl is about to start. I’m thinking I should cheer against Arizona simply because their big game that got them into the Bowl was being played while I was getting stitched up in Phoenix, thus causing the nurse assigned to me to ignore me. He even forgot to give me the tetanus shot that the doctor recommended, but that shot has shown up on the hospital bill that just arrived yesterday. But then, I really don’t care about the game one way or another, so I’ll just watch the commercials and maybe doze some. I’m tired after the run this morning.)