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Jumping Logs!

Both Saturday and Sunday were trail running days at Starkey Park.  Saturday was a longer run of 7 miles, and also some more work on the Map Project.  We did not run on any brand new trails, but went on some that I had not run on in a while, just to get my bearings again.  I will add them to my growing Starkey Map.  I’ve already had a few requests for copies of the map as soon as they are available 😉

I also took a slight detour (meaning, off the trail), for a little parkour fun.  It’s not a huge log by any means, but NiKYO and I had a great time leaping back and forth across the log while Sean snapped photos.  NiKYO is getting a lot better at hearing commands (“Over”) and reacting immediately to them. That dog sure was born to trail run!!



Trail Training- not what you think!

This morning NiKYO and I set out for “Trail Run Thursday” for some training.  Training?  Marathon training?  Speed training?  Intervals, tempo runs, repeats?  No… not that kind of training.  This morning was “Trail Running Manners for Dogs” training.  NiKYO is a young dog, and running on trails is pretty much like being at Disney World for him (read: over-stimulating!), so I took advantage of a quiet morning at the park to reinforce some of his trail manners.  I brought my dog training clicker and some treats for added motivation.  Running nicely with mom and not pulling on the leash? Click. Treat. Repeat.  He was still pretty excited on the run, but about 50% less spazzy than usual.

We also worked on our Map Project some.  We did not visit any new trails, but instead took some photos of key intersections of trails we have already mapped out.  The old bench is on the main hiking path, right at the turn off to go onto Moccasin Way.  The photo of NiKYO is on the path Deer Crossing, and understandably, he is looking for some deer (we didn’t see any today).  The last photo is Oak Trail Way which leads off of Deer Crossing.

Someone asked me if these were the real names of the paths, or if I made them up.  Yes, of course I made them all up.  But I think it is much easier (and more fun) to describe a path with a name, rather than, “Oh, you know, the one that leads East? And then cuts South for a bit? Yeah, the one that has that puddle?  No, not that puddle, the other one? …”   So, NiKYO and I will continue tracking our progress, taking photos, and making up names. 🙂

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Why You Don’t Need to “Crush It” Every Time

Thursday morning is my run morning with NiKYO.  We are pretty excited about our map project, so I was ready to go!  There are a few trails that are not too far off the main hiking path that I wanted to check out and add to our map.  We got to one, and started down it.  It was pretty rough, and has not been used in a long time (or ever), plus there were some signs of wild boar being on it (lots of dug up dirt).  We did not get very far when I decided that this would be a better trail to explore when it wasn’t just me and NiKYO, even though he’s a very brave pup.  So we turned back to the main trail.  At this point, it was feeling pretty hot and humid, and my legs were worn out from being busy this week.  I stopped and regrouped.  NiKYO was hot, I was hot, there was no reason to make this run long and miserable.  I changed our route to take us on just a short 2.5 mile run.

You do not have to “Crush It” every time.  You do not need every run or workout to be better, longer, faster, stronger than the last one you did.  I have seen many people training for races, training in the gym to lose weight, training to get stronger, etc. that get too worried about every workout being their best.  While it is good to want to progress and get better, it can be a mistake to think that the path to getting there is always beating yourself up and crushing it with every workout.  Recovery days are essential to making progress, as they keep your body from breaking down.  If you start a workout and just aren’t feeling it physically, then maybe it is a good day to dial it back and go a little easier on yourself.  And then when your body has recovered and you are feeling your best, then THAT is the day to push your limits!

Even though I cut our run shorter and dialed back the intensity today, we did take a detour on one of the “Birding Trails”  which was some nice single-track – including lots of log jumping, tree weaving, and leash untangling!  The photos above are from the bird trail.