Into the woods

 Every week since I updated the look here, I keep telling myself I will write. Somehow life (or sleep) gets in the way and I never sit down to get started on anything. 

Early last week, Bryan suggested that we take our long run to the Appalachian Trail and of course I agreed immediately. He knows how much I love running trails, especially the AT, and even more so, starting at Boiling Springs. I have a history with the AT, so running there always feels a little like home when we are able to run there. 

Some areas had a little snow Friday and it was evident that the trail was sprinkled with a tiny amount- just enough to feel slightly magical. It's been a super mild winter here in PA, so we get excited every time we see even a flurry of snow. 

There was no shortage of fun little fan mushrooms so I could not resist the urge to stop for a few photo ops. It seemed like they were doing some cleanup after the frequent high winds we have had lately, so I did see some areas with cut-down trees waiting to be hauled away.  The crews that take care of maintaining the AT do a fantastic job to make sure everyone can safely enjoy the trails year-round. 

At mile 4, which was my halfway point for the run, I snapped a quick picture to send to a dear friend, Katie. During a run that simultaneously feels like yesterday and a lifetime ago, we stopped here to do planks and snap a picture for a challenge she was participating in at the time. I'm pretty sure it was the day we were in matching shorts, but I can't find the picture right now.

After I took that picture, I headed back toward Boiling Springs for the breakfast we always look forward to at the end of long runs there. Bryan was running 10 miles, but because he runs quicker than me, I knew he would eventually catch up to me. I kept running and tried to see how far I would get before that happened. 

I was approaching mile 6 when I heard a familiar sniffle from behind me. I called out to him to tell him that and we both laughed. He stayed with me the last two miles and of course, they ended up being my fastest all morning. Finally in my groove after I hit the halfway point, we enjoyed the last miles before making it back to the car where we added warm clothes and stretched our bodies after a job well done.

We did snap an obligatory picture as we left the woods, celebrating our miles and a great morning on the trails. 

The trails were wet and a little mushy in some places, but overall not bad. I want to get better at sharing these everyday moments type runs, rather than waiting to write about races or big events as I have primarily done in the past. Honestly, our running "careers" are not made in those events, but rather, in our everyday training which includes struggles and wins that are often never seen by others. The early morning speed workouts or strength sessions and the long run efforts put in each week are what make the races even possible for our bodies. 

My goal this year is to share more of life and what happens between the races. I am putting that out there in an attempt to hold myself to this and make more space for writing and sharing through this blog. My hope is to also look in the rearview mirror a bit as well because I have not written here in so long that life has changed quite dramatically and I think it will be fun to reflect and share a little about that journey as well. 

Until next time... 


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