Showing posts with label wood chips. Show all posts
Showing posts with label wood chips. Show all posts

Friday, July 10, 2015

As exciting as it gets on a neighborhood run

And I guess that was your accomplice in the wood chipper
Today's run (street): 3.6 miles

I was berating myself at the beginning of this morning's run for being such a sloth and not working out since last Sunday. Then I remembered that I was home for the extended July 4th holiday on Monday and did an elliptical session that morning. I don't remember how long I worked out (35 mins?) but at least it was something.

I was up at 6:00 this morning and spent almost three hours working on business stuff. It suddenly occurred to me that if I didn't get outside soon, I'd lose any opportunity to run today. My schedule had me on calls and virtual meetings from 10:00 through the end of the day. Instead of stalling, I quickly changed into my running gear and got myself out the door.

The temperature was 72° and if the humidity was high I didn't notice. The wind was blowing briskly and that kept me cool throughout most of the run. The strong breezes made the uphill sections a little tougher, but I kept my mind on my stride and my breathing. I tried to focus on diaphragm breathing (versus chest) as suggested by a recent Runners World post.

Friday's are my weekend kick-off runs and I usually keep them between 3-4 miles. That's a perfect distance for me psychologically, short enough to feel quick and manageable (especially since I'm usually time constrained), but long enough to feel like a decent workout. Since the schools are closed now, the roads were pretty clear except for the army of landscaping trucks and their gardeners riding on the street between homes on industrial strength mowers. I still prefer that to avoiding school buses.

There's only so much to talk about when describing a neighborhood run, so I'll just say I ran on lots of roads and saw lots of houses and cars. There were people out walking, but no other runners that I could see. The big excitement came from a tree removal company that had set up a huge chipper and was griding up trees. A group of neighbors had gathered to watch the spectacle despite the 120 decibel roar.

I didn't stick around, but I assume they eventually ran out of trees and switched to chipping up trash barrels and lawn furniture. That's what I would have done. I managed to get through the rest of my run in time to shower and make my first call of the morning. I'm not sure what my morning schedule looks like tomorrow. If I'm able to get out early enough, I may head over to the track to try some intervals or head over to Bethpage for another crack at the bike trail..

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Trail running on the Bethpage feather bed

Wood-chipped trails as soft as a featherbed
Today's run (Bethpage State Park trails): 3.6 miles

Happy Mother's Day!

After yesterday's workout washout, I decided to go to Bethpage for a run on the wooded trails. It was rainy and overcast early in the morning, but the weather reports were predicting the sun would return by 9:00 AM. Once I saw that was true, I headed over to the park and made my way up the hill where I could pick up a trail on the southern side.

Once I got past the basketball courts and picnic area, I cut into the woods and encountered a wide, wood-chip covered path. I haven't spent much time on these trails since hurricane Sandy and I was surprised how much work was done to return them to pristine condition. Running along the path gave the sensation of being on a very thick carpet or a feather bed. Even though we'd gotten a soaking yesterday, the wood chips were doing a great job keeping things dry. 

I wanted to increase the challenge, so I took some side paths that were more technical, narrow and steep. I wondered if I'd run into the paved path that runs parallel to the top of the woods, but I stayed tucked inside. The low tree cover and the dry air acted like nature's air conditioner  I made my way back to the east end and followed a few trails that I'd never run before. One of these trails ran parallel to the start of the new paved bike path. I'd run next to it a number of times before, but never on it.  

Trail running miles can feel harder than pavement miles and that was the case today. I felt like I had a very good workout and it was great to be back to the woods. The trail was as comfy as a B&B mattress, except when I was running on twisty, narrow single-track. In each case, my surroundings made the experience an energizing way to spend a cool Sunday morning. 

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