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Embracing The Changes In Life

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Someone recently asked me about my running and how I currently feel about it. True, I'm not running 5 days per week as I have in the past. I'm not even running my usual 3. I think my new norm for awhile (maybe forever) might be 2 days a week.

How do I feel about it? I feel liberated. I feel like stepping outside of the model of runner to something bigger. Because I've said it before, and I will say it again, I am more than just a runner.
As I grow older with my family, I realize that life is constantly changing. I am constantly changing. And learning to embrace the change definitely makes for an easier transition. For probably the first time in my life, I am

Charlie Horse Trail Half Marathon Post Race

This is the most nervous I have ever been with a race. I think it was because not only was it my first Trail Half Marathon, but my first Trail race ever. And other than running a trail once in TN, this was my first 'true' trail run ever. I had no idea what to really expect. I also didn't have the proper shoes. I knew this going in, but I wasn't ruining my brand new trail shoes on this course. This isn't a 'typical' trail run, but with obstacles at the end which included mud pits and total mud running. So I had on old worn out running shoes with practically no tread. So yeah, I was nervous - extremely nervous.

We met at the registration area where they bused us to the start line. At the start line, we all pretty much headed for the woods before we started the race. This began my hysterical laughing as my friend and I tried to climb a small bank to find a spot to relieve ourselves. We were having a difficult time climbing up and even more difficultly climbing down. I found it hilarious that we were about to run 13 miles in this terrain.

At the beginning of the race, we crossed a creek. I (thankfully) stayed on my feet, but the rocks were very slippery. We ran a little on the trail and then crossed the creek again.

The scenery was beautiful when I wasn't concentrating so hard on where I was placing my feet. I did ok with the roots, but it was the rocks that kept getting me. I rolled my ankles a time or two, but thankfully nothing bad (or that I know of yet).

There were sections that were so steep I could barely stand up to walk up them. There were also steep downhills.

We hit the road section around mile 9. I actually enjoyed this part (or the first part which was downhill). I was able to 'hit my stride' and not be so concerned about where I was placing my feet. But after some VERY steep hills, I was ready to get back to the trail where I was told the real fun would start soon.

Yep, here were the mud pits and water holes that we waded through. I fell more than once. I didn't find these as difficult as the very muddy trail that we then had to run on. I was slipping and sliding all over the place.

But my friend kept on trudging ahead and I kept following. We wanted to come in under 3 hours. We knew it was going to be close, but also knew at this point it might be a reality. So, we picked up the pace. I was doing all that I could to follow her. We passed a few people here and there.

Finally we heard music so we knew we were close. We crossed the bridge and finally the finish line. I don't have the official results yet, but we made it under 3:00. I think our time was 2:58 and some change.

First Trail Half Marathon is in the books...

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