My first trail run

Yesterday afternoon Barry and I headed up to Claytor Lake State Park for my first ever trail run! As we rolled into the park, I had butterflies in my stomach much the same as the ones I get right before the start of a race. We parked at one of the trail heads and took off into the woods. Right away we were climbing.

As Loganhad warned, I found that I was much slower on the trails, due to the roots and rocks and hills. This was my first run since my race so it was good to go slower, although I felt like I was putting forth the same amount of effort I do to run my normal pace on roads. There was a nice view of the lake at the top of one of our longer climbs, and I glanced up to try and take it in and tripped for the first time. I ended up tripping a lot during our 4 mile run, but I never did fall!
Overall I really enjoyed my first trail run. It was very different from running on roads (duh) and I liked the added challenge. My ankles got tight during the run. I must have been using a lot of stabilizer muscles in my lower legs that don’t usually get used. I can definitely see where trail running helps build strength. Happily (because I was worried about bears and mountain lions…) the only wildlife sighting during our run was deer. At least ten of them, including this 8 point buck.
Before we headed out to Claytor Lake, I finally took care of something important I had been meaning to do.
I need to get Barry to stop taking pictures of me while he’s standing on a hill. I’m short enough as it is.

I know some think it’s pretentious, but I earned it. And I’m not bragging, I’m celebrating my accomplishment.

Speaking of accomplishments, I forgot to mention that I surpassed 1,000 miles of running in 2013 during the week of my marathon. That’s something I’ve never done before, but was hoping I would accomplish this year with the added miles for marathon training.

Clearly I didn’t know I would be sharing a picture of my running log when I wrote so messily.
I actually hit 1,000 miles just before mile 16 during the marathon. Now I need to set a new mileage goal 2014! 
What kind of wildlife have you seen while out running/biking/hiking?
If you have completed a half or full marathon, do you have a corresponding magnet on your vehicle?
Barry has a 26.2 magnet on his truck and until now I always felt like a liar when I drove his truck around.

14 thoughts on “My first trail run”

  1. Kelly and I ran there once and really liked it! My ankles did feel tight those afterwards. It’s such a pretty area!I have 13.1 sticker on my car and I know some people think it’s lame, but I’m with you – I’m celebrating what I did! Hopefully I can add a 26.2 next March πŸ™‚

  2. I defintely get sore in new places when I run trails…even if I’ve been doing it for a while! I think that article was silly and while I GET that sometimes FB, Twitter, Pinterest, etc, can get a little out of control with the “I just ran,blah blah blah” posts, it’s better than people being like “I just ate 5 cheeseburgers and a giant coke and then sat on my couch in front of the TV for 5 hours” Personally, I don’t have a magnet/sticker, but I always thinks it’s nice when I see them..I think to myself, “ahh, another runner! My people!” Congrats on the 1000 miles!! I hit that last weekend!

    1. I like seeing them on other cars, too! I feel an instant connection with the driver every time I see a 13.1 or (now) 26.2. Congrats on your 1,000 miles, too!

  3. I have encountered the typical kinds of wildlife on the trails in Northern Virginia; Deer, bunnies, snakes, turtles, and the occasional woods dweller that appears to be citizenship challenged.Of course the magnet on my truck says 0.0. I did log 1,700 miles on the bike this year, combined road and trail. And I am a fair weather daylight rider.LUD.

    1. Eek you have to watch out for those woods dwellers! I hear they are prevalent in the region. I’m glad you got your 0.0 truck so you can represent! πŸ™‚ That is a lot of miles in the saddle!

  4. You totally deserve that magnet and should display it proudly! And HOORAY for your first trail run. Hope you continue to venture onto more trails. It’s such a great (and different) workout from road running, plus the scenery can’t be beat!

    1. Thanks πŸ™‚ I am looking forward to exploring more trails! It is probably going to be an every other weekend thing, because I don’t want to go alone and Barry only has off work every other weekend.

  5. These days, monkeys are my most common sighting! Otherwise, lots of birds, a few squirrels, and sometimes a monitor lizard. I have no car, so the sticker question is irrelevant. Except, I’d “earned” stickers while owning a car, but can’t bear the thought of “defiling” the perfect back of the car with a sticker. So I am a non-sticker-er. I don’t care if other people do – it’s just not for me! πŸ™‚

    1. Monkeys! I would love to see a monkey while running πŸ™‚ I agree putting a sticker on a car is like “defiling” it. Luckily someone invented the magnetic bumper sticker! πŸ™‚

  6. I just read the article. That man should focus all of his angry energy and good writing skills on trying to make a difference about something that matters. That is my opinion, however, which is irrelevant. Just like his.(I think he may have ruffled my feathers!)

    1. Sounds like he definitely rubbed you the wrong way. I know some people feel like those magnets are runners shoving their accomplishments in other people’s faces but that’s not the way I look at it at all. For one, it’s an accomplishment, and two it lets other runners know they have kinship with you πŸ™‚

  7. You earned that magnet, so drive around with it proudly! I love it when I’m driving to a race and all of the cars seem to have some sort of running related magnet on them. It makes me smile! I have a “Runner Girl” magnet on my car. Oh, and of course I have the “Hokie Half” on there as well! πŸ™‚

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