First, I must shamefully admit that I have two race reports I still need to write. I can’t seem to get my butt in gear. I think I have summer-itis, you know, that giddy feeling you get when it’s warm and light almost all night and sitting at a desk in front of a screen feels like drudgery.
But forget racing. Let’s talk running. Last night my partner and I headed out to run one of my all-time favorite trails: Prospect to Glen Alps. It’s 3.5 miles of uphill. And it’s relentless. It never flattens out. It’s an uphill slog that goes on and on and on. I think it comes out to about 1200 feet.
What I love about long uphill runs is the way the unending effort empties you out, frees your mind of clutter, files away at your ego until it’s just you and the trail and your body moving forward. Running like that is a type of meditation, a way of purifying the mind of negative debris and worries and stresses. And once you add the beauty of the mountains, the landscape and the large and blue sky, it becomes almost holy.
When we reached the top we ate a Cliff bar and stared out at the view. It was about 10 p.m., still light (of course), and the air was filled with that expectant quiet of late evening, when everything feels hushed and secretive.
Then we retied our shoes and ran down, down, down for over three miles–what a rush. Normally we have to stop for moose on the trail. It’s almost inevitable. Yet last night we saw no moose, nothing but a lone biker who warned us of a grizzly bear seen on Blueberry Loop. We weren’t planning on running Blueberry Loop but still it was exciting to think that as we ran, a grizzly roamed the trails less than a mile away.