Introduction

Hello, thank you for joining me along my journey of becoming a Runner! I've always been an active guy, played sports in high school and continued into adult recreation sports after high school. As I started my family and found a career, the activity level slowly decreased. Well my Fiance had enough of our lazy ways and started on the Weight Watchers program and completely overhauled our daily meals. Step 2 was getting more active, so we decided to JOG our annual Juvenile Diabetes charity walk and actually enjoyed the activity. The month following the charity walk, we signed up for our first official 5K and had an absolute blast. From that point forward I have officially been BIT by the running bug and this is my journey to becoming a RUNNER!

Monday, June 9, 2014

Another Great Trail Run...Am I Bias???

Last week my long run was a trail run at 11.5 miles.  This weekend I was able to get out for another trail run for 10 miles.  My original plan was to run the entire run on the trail, but to be honest when I started my run at 4:30am it was still pretty dark outside and I was scared to hit the trail with uneven surfaces and desert animals out there lol.  Here is a quick little video of whats it like for me starting at 4:30am, pretty much pitch black.



Last week my goal was elevation gain and this week I planned to keep it pretty flat and just focus on the ten miles on my plan.  Once I hit the trail I looked up at the microwave tower that I ran to last week and in my head it was pretty much laughing at me for not running up two weeks in a row.

 
Now I know I am completely bias when it comes to trails.  I enjoy running out on the trails so much but with views like these, how can you not stop and appreciate your run.  BTW I'm so glad I found the panoramic feature on my phone.
 


Here is the one hill that was on my run.  From here it looks like a tough task but its pretty gradual.


Here in AZ it tends to get a bit HOT, so many of my miles on my long runs are done before the sun comes up.  As many times as Ive seen the same sunrise, it still makes me stop and appreciate the beauty.


Another panoramic shot of the landscape.  Honestly I can run here every day.


And another...


Here is one of the downhill sections that I'm usually running down, pretty technical and you have to watch what your doing or you can end up with a twisted ankle or possibly missing teeth.


For those of you that have never visited AZ, we are well known for our cacti.  These things can grow to be absolutely massive.  Here are a few along the trail that just towered over me so I had to stop and take a pic.  This thing had to be 50 feet tall.

Another finding this weekend.  I ran a few new sections of the trails and noticed that all along the trail are these smaller cacti that are just hanging waiting to snag an arm, or leg.  I made sure to stay wide of them but you can see how they could cause some serious damage if you brushed up against them.

 
10 miles on the trail and honestly I felt absolutely great.  I took a cliff energy gel at the 45 minute mark and I felt like it really kept my energy level up. I can see my training towards my first marathon including all my long runs on the trails. 
 
Do you prefer running your long runs on the road or on trails??

15 comments:

  1. I like my long runs on trails, because I can relax more about my pace. Street running i often feel self imposed pressure to hit a certain pace. I love seeing all your great views! Very different climate from my norm...running on trails like will make your street runs feel easier! That's a great way to train :) Glad you enjoyed your long run.

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    1. I feel the same way, put a lot of pressure on myself to run fast on the roads. I'm hoping if I can run 26 miles on the trails, I will kill my marathon in February.

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  2. Awesome pictures. I totally know what you mean about appreciating the sunrise no matter how many times you watch it come up during a run. I'm always in awe of the sunrise and the sunset. Every time I'm running I always tell myself "one of these days I'm going to get up early just to sit and watch without running" ... I really need to make that happen!

    Have you read Sage Canaday's book? I just started it this weekend!

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    1. I told Mrs Schlub I think I take the same picture each week but I cant help it, love those shots.

      No I havent read his book, I've seen it a ton of times on his site but never ponied up and bought it. How is it so far?

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    2. It reads a bit like a daily diary, which means it can get a little bit repetitive, but overall it's a good read so far. I wish he talked more about his races, but I suppose as an elite runner he just didn't race a lot during those years. Pretty interesting that he ran double digit miles pretty much every day at 6 minute pace or faster! He said 6 minute pace was the easy pace at the camp!

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  3. Wow, those pictures are amazing! Living on the East Coast of Canada we don't see vegetation like that, lol. Not even close. I'd love to run in the desert, if I could survive the heat that is. I usually prefer to do my long runs on the trail here. But our trail is a bit different since it used to be a railway. Therefore, it's flat and covered in firm crushed gravel. I need to know if I have the panoramic option on my iPhone 4S!

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    1. The heat is definately something you have to get used to. Crushed gravel is still better than pavement, those hard surfaces are tough to run on. I'm sure the iPhone has panoramic view, I bet there are some awesome views up there in Canada.

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  4. Beautiful pictures! Glad you are having so much fun on the trails :)

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    1. Thanks, I hate to give up on roads 100% but I'm definately leaning that way.

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  5. i'm pretty sure if i had trails like that i would never run on a road again. ok, maybe not...but i'm super jealous that you have both :)

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    1. HA...that is what I struggle with too. All our good races with good bling are on roads so I dont know it I can give it up 100% but we will see.

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  6. What a beautiful run! I don't blame you for not wanting to hit the trails in the dark. I would be petrified of running into a snake. I like to mix it up for long runs. I don't have any trails close to me, so I often run on roads.

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    1. Get some really great views. I've seen havelina and coyotes out on these trails so I wasnt about to meet one of those on the trail in the dark.

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  7. Great job getting up early to get your long run in before the heat of the day sets in! It can be hard to roll out of bed on the weekends, but the thought of paying for it later in the heat usually gets me up. I love those panoramic pictures! Your mountains are so different looking from mine, but they are also gorgeous to look at. I think I just like mountains in general :)

    If I ran in a place that had cactus, I would totally end up tripping and falling in it!

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    1. Yes they are, but we are going up north in a few weeks and those trails should look a lot more like yours.

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