Sunday, June 13, 2010

Lessons from the trail

I learned a couple of interesting and important lessons regarding route-planning and life yesterday. 1) There is a big difference between a hiking trail and a walking trail! 2) Family-time matters, too.

Lesson one: Walking trails, at least in my area, are generally paved, sometimes shaded, mostly well-lit, and wide enough for several people to walk together. Hiking trails around here, however, are dirt paths, littered with rocks, in the brush and rarely lit.

I think I mentioned we had a bit of rain yesterday - like 6 inches in 3 hours. So, when the planned walk I routed turned into an unpaved hiking trail a mile in, I was very disappointed! It was muddy and riddled with slippery, treacherous rocks devoting themselves to tripping me and trying their hardest to twist my ankles. I had to give up.

It just wasn't worth risking injury!

Lesson two: Once I stopped focusing on the walk as a training exercise, it became a great "family" outting. My boyfriend usually comes for the first few miles and he brought my dog Sadie with him yesterday. We had so much fun watching her splash around the trail! She had a blast too and I could tell she loved spending the time with us. I enjoyed it too.

Training for the 3-Day involves a lot of alone time for me. So, it was nice to spend the time with my loved ones after expecting to be along for 5 hours on new trails. No, I didn't do the suggested 14 miles, but I ended up doing something even more important: spending much-needed quality time with my family.

On the way home from the trails, we picked up some ice cream and just really enjoyed each other for the rest of the evening. I'll be back out pounding the ground this afternoon, but I don't feel bad at all for giving my afternoon and evening to my boyfriend and our four-legged daughter.

We are training because everyone deserves a lifetime. And that's what yesterday was - a wonderful moment in my lifetime.


  1. I had a training walk planned the other day and headed out on the walking trail along one of our little creeks. However, a mile and a half in the sidewalk was covered in water from the flooded creek. I tried to get around it my cutting through the neighborhoods nearby and had to give up and turn around. I've decided life happens and there's always a reason for it.

    I've also learned to NEVER pass up a bathroom opportunity!

  2. I am a hiker, and when training for my first walk I thought 10-12 miles at 6000 feet elevation would be equivalent of a day on the walk. For the cardio and the lungs, that is true. But on the walk your feet hit the pavement twice as many times and it is pavement. Be sure to get your knees ready for the walk, too.