Monday, May 31, 2010

A Stillwell Woods trail run wraps up the week

Today's run (Stillwell Woods trails): 4.7 miles at 9:54 per mile

It may have been the realization that the long Memorial Day weekend was coming to an end that had me feeling a little low this morning. In anticipation of a full day's activities I set out early on a trail run at the local preserve (Stillwell Woods). I had hoped that the hard activity combined with running the wooded paths would help me improve my mood.

The weather people were reporting hot conditions so I dressed accordingly. The shade from the trees held off the heat from the sun but it was still extremely humid, even at 7:30 AM. I've learned enough about the trails to navigate with some confidence and I followed a two mile route that took me east and south. I repeated that loop but picked up the wrong trail at a cross point that took me in an unfamiliar direction. At one point, as I followed a tight singletrack path, I was startled to see a large dog standing in my way. I hoped the dog was friendly and was glad when its owner appeared and quickly called it off. Later in the run I saw them again but this time I was prepared for the encounter. Occasionally I'll encounter an overly exuberant dog in my runs at Stillwell but I'm happy to say the dogs are never aggressive or threatening. Along the way I encountered a few other people running their dogs and a handful of mountain bikers bombing down the trails at speeds I would not have attempted. I eventually found my bearings and made my way back to a trail along my planned route where I continued until I reached the big field. One loop around that field and my run was done.

It's been a week packed with many runs including some fun experiences in Cambridge, at Eisenhower Park and today on the trails. I plan to rest tomorrow and then start planning for my next race, an 8K that happens on June 13. I plan to go shopping this week for a new lightweight tech shirt to help me handle the summer heat. That's always a nice way to elevate the mood and break up the work day.

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