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The Trail Hangover

09/02/2011

I feel like garbage today. But good garbage, like the kind rich people put out. After swimming Wednesday and Thursday mornings, I was tired and my hamstrings were super sore, but I was not going to miss my Medved trail run. I look forward to it each week and if I punked out I would just end up folding laundry. Besides, it was Thorlo night and I wasn’t going to let a little muscle fatigue keep me from free socks!

Last night’s run was held a Dryer Road Park in Victor. Because it was a little bit further away, I carpooled with local mother runner Martha, who lives on the other side of town. Like Irodequoit Bay Park West last week, Dryer Park has a ton of trails that have been “repurposed” by GROC. The first part of the run was tough but a little boring as for as trail running goes–mostly grass with some hardpack dirt over steep climbs and one very long, very slow climb. After the out-and-back, we hit some mountain bike trails which made the first 30 minutes of the workout worth it.

The first one was called Chutes and Ladders and is exactly like the game–long, winding downhills followed by tough climbs. Some of the uphills featured series of logs as “ladders.” Although it is considered an Intermediate course, it was a tough pass but also a lot of fun. It was really humid and I couldn’t help but daydream of the ice-cold beer in my fridge, and when we paused briefly at the bottom of the last “chute,” a few others mentioned beer too. We were thirsty! After a long trudge uphill, which everyone walked, we regrouped for the final time. Dennis led us through The Den, an Expert trail that is about a 1/2 mile downhill with plenty of twists and turns, some of the bends banked like an indoor track. The path was narrow and the drop off to the right was really steep. It was a crazy finish!

If you’re keeping count, I used the words “tough” 3 times, “steep” 2 times, and “crazy” 1 time. That’s because trail running is pretty badass.  And even though trail runners are a really laid-back, friendly group, I consider them uber-runners. Example: In my search for future trail races, I stumbled across The Sehgahunda (pronounced Say-ga-hunda) Trail Marathon. Sehgahunda is described as “the real deal. It may just be one of the hardest trail marathons in the east. It’s 26.3 miles of single-track trails, over 3000 feet of climbing, and over 100 gullies that need to be traversed.” There are all these rules like runners must carry 16 ounces of fluid at all times, runners must check in at each of the 8 aid stations along the course or be disqualified, and runners must complete the course in 8 hours. All of it sounds awesomely scary to me and I’ve been tossing around the idea of doing it next May (2012). Fleet Feet offers a special training program for Sehgahunda which makes me slightly less afraid of this race, but not too much. Long story short, last night one of the girls described running Sehgahunda as “Well, it wasn’t easy.” That’s it? Really? Because I would use superlatives like “ludicrous” and “I must have been out of my effing mind!” to describe its degree of difficulty. But this girl was talking about Sehgahunda like I talk about opening a jar of peanut butter–mildly straining with briefly considering asking for help. Damn.

Anywho, after the run we got our free socks and I headed home for my ham sandwich and oat soda (that’s code for ham sandwich and beer). Today I am am sore as h-e-double-hockey-sticks and taking an unscheduled day off. The abs-and-arms workout I had planned is just not going to happen. And the 18-miler I have planned for Sunday sounds like the stupidest thing in the whole world. But I’ll bounce back in time. Hopefully.

Thursday’s Workout:
AM: Swim 31:21
PM: Trail Run 56:33

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