Saturday, October 17, 2015

Sometimes You Just Do Things

"He's Winnie-ther-Pooh. Don't you know what 'ther' means?"
"Ah, yes, now I do," I said quickly; and I hope you do too, because it is all the explanation you are going to get." - A.A. Milne 

Shortly after we began the run Maggi asked me why I decided to run today. I tried to formulate an answer and realized the truth is "It just felt like something I wanted to do". And one of the many great things about fitness buddies is that's all the explanation they needed. 

I didn't pass out from lack of oxygen a few weeks ago when the Bella Bootcamp crew went for a mile run after our workout. In fact I felt pretty good after. So I posted a message out to the crew to see who might be available to join me for a run today. I knew the chances of getting everybody was small and I was thrilled to see that Maggi, Julius and Sara were free this morning! Mike is in taper mode for Marine Corps Marathon next week and Fitz had drill this weekend. 

I decided an hour of interval running was something I could manage. I wanted to challenge not discourage myself. I'm at the point where 2 hours is an easy hike for me. So I figured an hour of running might tax my cardio fitness but not leave me slumped over gasping for air. :) I debated the intervals and (1 and 1 or 2 and 1) and decided 2 and 1 was good. Speed and distance were irrelevant today. I simply wanted time on my feet running. 

On the way home from the run I was drive-dancing to "I Feel Good". Which is way better than the "Space Oddity" which was in my head on the way to it. *Shrug* Yeah, I don't get it either. There's more than one reason for just keep smiling and keep moving. :)

Today was perfect - from the company to the weather. I felt good and had a great time. I look forward to running again (soon I hope). The weather can be iffy from time to time but there is never a question about the company. 

Thank you friends. As always
You Rock! 
We were treated to gorgeous views from the
Hawk Observation Platform at Ft Washington State Park
post-run. 

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Taking the Scenic Route

Taking the Scenic Route -- isn't that what one says when one is lost but wants to pretend it was on purpose? The thing is I wasn't really lost and there is rarely such a thing as a non-scenic route when hiking in the woods. I can't get lost in Ridley Creek State Park. It's my home turf so to speak and unless I'm suffering from a blow to the head I can pretty much figure out where I am and which way to go to get back to where I want to be.

Having said all that, I did not stick to the plan today. I left from area #9 for a counterclockwise hike of the White Trail Loop. Just below the trail head is a spur that goes to a lookout over the creek. It's one of my (many) favorite spots in the park. I went to take a look and noticed a 'Pete-Trail' off to the left. Since I was alone and therefore not responsible for anyone but myself - I took it. It had obviously been blazed by people before me but not by many. I came out on to the equestrian trial that comes off Area #8. For a brief moment I thought I'd follow that trail instead. It loops back to Area #8 and then it would be just a short trip up the road to my car. But there were two reason not to do this: 

1) This trail crosses under Gradyville Road and into a section of the park that allows archery hunting during deer hunting season. I don't think it's deer season quite yet but I did not have any blaze orange on and did not want to run into someone who was out there anyway. Not that one can't get hurt wearing proper colors but I'd rather it be the other person's fault. 

2) I did not have trail map with me. The equestrian trail is on the map but the trail markers are non-existent. Last time I tried to hike it I came to a section that was so overgrown and appeared to be part of someone's backyard. I do want to conquer that trail and finish the loop someday but today was not going to be it. Even with the map it's hard to follow. 

So I took that trail to Area #8 and then followed the road down up and around to pick up the White Trail across the multi use trail from the Mansion and continued clockwise on the White Trail back to my car.  

It was cool and damp today. I expected the trail to be much muddier than it was after all the rain Thursday, Friday and Saturday morning. I guess that's a sign we really needed the rain here. There was a lot of debris and downed branches from the wind. The winds blew through still and I was glad I remembered ear covering. I wore long sleeves and a shell. If it had been a longer or more strenuous hike I probably could have made it with short sleeves. We are in that in between time and temperature now. 

The plan is to hike RCSP on Sundays for the foreseeable future. Next Sunday's we'll start from the Mansion and follow the Yellow and White Trails. If you'd like to join the hike click here or send me a message.