If you know me you know how much running is just a part of who I am. Its not an obsession or a fix, its simply who I am and what I do as part of my daily routine. There is something about going out and making things simple again with each step you get to take. As runners we have to remember that each step is a gift and something that we shouldn't take for granted. Stop every once in a while and just look around, take in your favorite running spots and always be in search of new ones. Running so many different things to so many people that it just can't be a one way run, it should be a two way run meaning that as we go out on the route we let that route come into our day. Give it a try once and I promise that you won't be thinking of your next run as a punishment for your body but instead a nice relaxing and unique experience.
I started trail running last year and it all came on a simple thought of " Hey man do you want to try and run the Jail Trail?" The jail trail is a local mountain biking trail filled with twists and turns. Its really not a bad trail to train on and its really the best thing for off road running in the St. Cloud area. That first run sparked something in me that I honestly never felt before, almost like a sense of adventure that I was missing on the regular road routes, which by the way are engraved into my memory by now. Each step on the trail is different and each step on the trail is new. You can never run a trail the same way twice, I run the Jail Trail 4 or 5 a week and I have yet to have the same experience out on the trail.
All I had known before venturing off onto the trail was pavement and how each run for me was about one simple thing, SPEED. I wanted to be the fastest person on the road and I simply let my runs pass by, not taking in the scenery or the experience that each run has to offer. I love to lace em and race em but there is a time for that and I was still figuring that out last year, honestly it took me a while to find out why I run but it most certainly happened once I stepped off the pavement and on to the fresh dirt. I always knew the feeling that each run gave me but I never knew there was more to it than simply racing around the city everyday. The best part of me finding running on a deeper level is that I realized there are all sorts of runners, and each runner has a special connection with their running.
The best piece of advice I have recieved about running, but it works for everything in life, was from my Dad. I was feeling a little bummed about DNFing in Duluth for the 100k and extremely nervous for Land Between the Lakes 50 miler in Kentucky. My Dad told me to simply finish it because I want to, that digging deep is what it really took. I knew my training was where I wanted it to be but I didnt know if I could dig that deep and pull it all out of myself. In the end it was a success and I finished my first 50 mile run with the time of 9:14. Getting that huge confidence booster with the strong finish, I have signed up for the Lean Horse 100. This is where I will be posting my experiences along the journey to 100 miles.