Sunday, August 19, 2012

My First Trail Run

Today was my first experience with trail running. One of my relatively new running buddies had signed up with her friend to run the "Run on the Sly" 12k race. Her friend got injured about a month before the race and had to give up her entry. I was asked to run the race and I couldn't say no to the chance to test out how my running would be on a trail run.

We drove an hour to get to the scenic race in the hills of Tahoe. The race began at 3,500 ft and rose to 4,400 ft throughout the race. There were two huge hills, one at the very beginning of the race and one that led to the halfway point. My legs were tired before I started the race from my 17 mile training run the day before, so I started a bit slow, but picked up my pace as the race went on. With trail running, the pace is much slower than a road race due to the unsteady nature of the trails. There are rocks, sticks and other obstacles you have to watch out for. I was very careful during this race to watch where I stepped to keep myself free of injury.

I finished the race at 1:22:48 and was pretty happy with my time considering the nature of the race, my tired legs and the crowd of people I was following. The second half of the race I ran much faster than the first half. Once I warmed up I was able to push myself and run strong to the end. If you haven't done a trail run before I would recommend that you give it a try.

Some of the positives are of trail running are:
  • Soft trail to run on 
  • Beautiful Scenery
  • Challenging
This weekend was a challenging one. My 17 mile run the day before was difficult. I had a very hard time getting started and pushing myself. I need to find a new running route because I tend to find it hard to run the same route every week. My task this week will be to research a new place to run that will challenge me.

What did you do to stay active this weekend? Do you prefer trail runs or road runs?