The past few months have been pretty hard on me as I recovered from a devastating surgery on my achilles tendon. At the same time it gave me the opportunity to take some time to evaluate the role running plays in my life. I can tell you this, it’s a big role. From race directing, to writing, to group runs, and volunteering, it really takes up a big portion of my day to day activity. In an instant it was gone and I was suddenly surrounded by something I loved that I could not do. Sort of like being in a room full of fresh pizza that I couldn’t touch. It was frustrating so I had to find a few ways to cope. Here is my advice below
- Don’t abandon running all together. Volunteer, cheer, make silly signs at a race. Stay involved.
- Find some way to stay active – I ended up at 4-Performance in Brighton. They have kept me moving while I wait this recovery out.
- Make plans for the future. Don’t let this set you back from your future PR’s.
- Be angry, it’s ok. Trust me if you love running, you will be angry about not running. Let that happen
- Make it your goal to help another runner reach their goals. We brag about community here a lot, this is part of where that comes in.
- Start back slow when you are given the all-clear.
Hang in there, I can speak from experience that once you are able, running will be there for you. The trails will wait, and your friends will cheer! See you on the trails.
-TRAIL NEWS –
Group Runs: Always fun – Always free!
Tuesday Trail Workouts – 6:00PM. A change to these runs! We will now use Tuesday evenings for hard workouts. We will organize either hill work, speed work, or longer hard runs. This will be done in a way that ANY pace can show up. Join us and learn about these great workouts
Wednesday Morning Runs– 6:00AM. We will post the schedule on our facebook page each week and the website is updated as we go.
TLC- Our “Trail Learning Crew” Will work with the same concept of SAS but will now include more of a structured “learn the park” style runs. Days and times vary so for more information on these group runs check out http://www.trailsroc.org/tlc
Friday Night Lights – It sure beats trying to pick someone up in a dark bar! In all seriousness check out the Friday night schedule here
Please join us for our upcoming trail work days –you use ’em, so help us to build/clean them up (and get in some nice cross training in the process!) :
Sunday June 11th -Black Creek Park @ 9am – Trail Maintenance – Woodside Lodge Parking Lot. Please be sure to park in the section of the lot that is not reserved for the Lodge.
#TrailsRoc: The App: Updates coming soon! Stay tuned!
Know a good trail that is not in our database? Keep sending us your GPX data and allow others to share that trail with you. Contact TrailsRoc@Gmail.com with GPX or comments.
0 spf half-ish marathon – The race is sold out but the wait list is open, it moves pretty fluidly so if you did not get in I would get on the list soon. You can get yourself on the waitlist here
This is our 5th year. We have a few streakers left and can’t wait to add some new faces to the list of finishers. See ya out there.
June/July Runner Spotlight
Michael is a staple at many of the toughest races in the area and surrounding states He has finished a slew of ultras, including the Beast of Burden hundred miler this past January. Michael always has a mind to challenge himself, in turn inspiring others to do the same. Here Michael shares what the community has meant to him :
Hi Folks! I consider myself very lucky to call many of you reading this, friend. To others, I hope to do the same in the near future.
I love trail running. Love competing in events, especially ultras, and have recently achieved some big goals, like completing my first hundred miler this past January at the 2017 Winter Beast of Burden. Impressive? Sure. But, everything is relative. We all have great stories to tell. Here is a piece of mine.
I started active life late, mid-forties. Prior to that I was relatively healthy, but never really fit, and certainly not athletic.
About 10 years ago I found myself with a busted marriage, no job, a mortgage, and a family to support. At one point during this time I was lying on the floor with back pain so bad it took me over 5 hours to get onto the bed that was right next to where I Iay. That was my low point. Something had to change. I had to change.
I was stuck in a logjam. Floating in the flotsam with no easy way out, unable to escape to the river of possibility flowing by me. That’s how I felt. Trapped. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t think my way out of my mess. My cerebral abilities had served me well to this point in life. Or, so I thought.
Eventually, I did find the key. I had to stop thinking. For me, it was the over-reliance on rational thought that had placed me in that logjam. The bane of an over-active mind, bent on analyzing everything with logic, leaving me clueless to the factors blocking my path. Although there was plenty of opportunity to blame others, or just circumstances in general, doing that would be just another trap. I had to find a way to stop thinking so much.
It was physical activity…vigorous, sustained, physical activity…that got me out of my head and reconnected to the rest of me. Orienteering first, then combat sports, yoga, outdoor boot camp classes, running, and finally trail running.
Why trail running? Many reasons. First, it is the awesomeness of our trail running community. The community makes it super easy to progress. It supports consistency of effort. If you show up and participate you will get results. It gets easier. Yet, stays just as hard as you want it to through the aspiration of new goals. It does all this in the background, whether we realize it or not, while we make new friends and share great times. A lot has been said about our trail running community, but mere words don’t do it justice. It is just awesome.
Trail running requires you to be in the moment. It is possible to zone out on a road run or a bike ride. But if you do that during a trail run, especially around here, it won’t be long until you are eating dirt after a face plant, or wincing in pain from a twisted ankle.
I remember thinking, “what would I think about when running a 50 miler which could take 12 hours or more?” Well, the answer has more to do with listening, than thinking. Our bodies tell us so much, but we have to be open to it. We have to stop the self-absorption of paying attention to what our rational mind is saying and instead listen to what the rest of the body is signaling.
I believe this “in the moment” thing is the key. The present moment is all we truly have. Even when we think about the past, or dream about the future, we experience those thoughts in the here and now. We react and respond in the moment that is “now”. Trial running supports this. Safe, injury free, trail running requires it. We must listen and feel with open senses and open hearts to what the moment tells us.
We all have our own challenges, our own demons. It is the space in our minds we are forced to return to whether we are honest with ourselves, or not. I call this metaphysical place the “edge”. Our individual “edge” is where attention is placed to move us forward. Attention is “in the moment”.
Where is your “edge”? How can trail running affect it?
- Vigorous exercise battles weight issues head on and builds overall strength.
- Community eliminates loneliness.
- Activity and movement counteracts depression.
- “In the moment” focus clears the ills of an over-active mind in this 21st
Freedom. Not sure if it is the centeredness achieved, or the oneness with the surroundings, but trail running makes me feel free. While I’m running through the woods I can think and feel whatever I want.
One of the best parts of this trail running hobby for me occurs before a big race. I get so excited. It is a feeling that is real and powerful. I experienced it again recently as I was heading to central PA for the Hyner 50K. The realization that I am going to run through the woods challenging my whole self for 7 hours with (in this case) over 1000 like-minded crazies has at times brought me to tears of joy (no…it hasn’t) ((ummm…yes it has!)). It is a feeling of real freedom, and of real connection. It is me, leaning over my edge, and moving down that river of possibility. It starts low, travels up my spine, and busts out of my cranium. Bam!!! Yee-haw!!! Whazooey!!!
Of course, the trail running event eventually ends. We go home and return to normal life. But, there is better balance and more peace. Tomorrow, the sun will rise. The mountain will stand. The forest will vibrate with life. It is there, waiting for us. Time to lace up and head out once more. Happy trails, everyone!
It is always amazing to travel to races and see how well our community is represented. Recently, many of us took on the challenge of the cayuga trails series of races in Ithaca. While there I had the chance to see for myself the wide reach our organization has within the trail community. It seems that Rochester has indeed developed a reputation for talented runners and rugged trails. Wearing the #trailsroc logo, as well as running along others who do the same, usually prompts at least a few conversations with new friends. It is a symbol that means a lot to myself , and to so many others in our community. I am hoping this summer we can take the next steps in making our trail community even stronger as we look toward the anniversary of a special race. A race that indeed was the proving ground that #trailsroc was not only a needed organization, but a sustainable and thriving not-for-profit that continues to embrace us all. See you out there soon on the trails