Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Runnin' in Style on the Moat Single Track

I hate running with my Garmen Forerunner. I don't like the way it teases me with a painfully slow increase in the mileage count. I don't like the way it makes me compete with myself to keep the average pace up where I think it should be, and then makes me watch as the average creeps to an unacceptably slow number as I run up a huge hill or over rugged terrain. I can't stand it when I think I am virtually flying down an easy stretch of trail and the average pace should be getting back where it belongs, only to notice I have lost the satellite signal and the numbers aren't changing at all. I hate it when I forget to hit the stop button for a pee break or forget to hit the start button after a pee break. It's upsetting that the smallest setting on the band is still big enough to strap around my thigh and the watch face itself is bigger than my palm. I loathe that when I download the data from my run onto my PC, the speed, distance, and elevation graph comes out all choppy and unreadable. When I trouble shoot this online I am told I need to purchase and download all sorts of stuff to correct my device's errors. The only time I love my Garmen is when I take it off and throw it into one of my desk drawers for a few months.

Today I ran 20.3 miles on the Moat area single track in just under 4 hours and I could have figured that out pretty accurately by checking my car clock before I left and after I got back. I don't care about my max speed (4.8 minute mile pace! -probably when I was sliding on my ass down that steep gravel hill) or my average pace (10.6 minute miles). I don't want to know my slowest pace (20.2 minute mile) or what my elevation gain was (8313 feet). I don't want to slide the data over to Google Maps and create a nifty picture of my loop (my device makes a choppy blocky zig zag line instead of the nice smooth loops everyone else seems to get). And I don't want to post all the charts, graphs, and maps on facebook. Honestly, I just like to run in the woods.

Not only did I wear my Garmen Forerunner 305, I also wore a running skirt and a snazzy lime green cami. And I haven't admitted it to anyone before now, but I've been running in shoes that are classified as minimalist for all my runs for over a year now. What is this world coming to? I normally have a style all my own which does not include fancy running clothes, trendy shoes, bright colors, or matching outfits, especially not in the woods! The shoes, Saucony Peregrines, work for me because they are light, flexible, and comfortable. They can't help it if they are a minimalist shoe, so I don't hold it against them. And I have to admit, the skirt worked out pretty well. It didn't cause any rubbing or chafing. Maybe I will become one of those stylish trail divas yet! But I draw the line at animal prints. If you ever see me in pink zebra stripes or lavender leopard spots, just shoot me.

I really hoped to run longer today, but I took Scout with me and he reached his limit about 3 and a half hours into the run. I will have to start leaving him at home on long run days now that my mileage is getting up above his comfort zone. He'll still get plenty of trail runs in on my other days. My next long run will be next Tuesday and I hope to get back to the Moats for it. I am only fitting in two really long runs a month on my two weekdays off from work that I have each month. I am also getting in one speed work day, one hill work day, and several moderately long trail runs each week. It feels like plenty. I think I'll be fine for Vermont. Instead of running the traditional weekend long run, I'd rather spend my weekends doing things with Kevin that we both enjoy like mountain biking, trail work, hiking, and kayaking. I have struggled with the "weekend long run" for my entire life. It never felt right. My kids probably still hold those weekend runs and races against me! This new balance makes me feel very well rounded and happy.

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