Today’s was a run I didn’t know I needed. Here we are five weeks into working at home here in Colorado and I am over sitting in front of a screen 40 hours a week. Luckily, my training plan called for an increase in mileage just about the time this whole #SocialDistancing began. I couldn’t be more thankful for the distraction and some good trail running.
It’s funny how plans change. At the end of February, I shared my running plans for 2020. This included warm-up races in April, May and June leading up to a huge goal of 100 miles at the Lean Horse 100 in August.
Well… So far the April race has canceled. The May race is postponed until August. The June race is still on, but a fair chance of it being changed as well. And it wouldn’t be wise for me to be doubling up on any races in August this year.
All of my work travel has been cancelled for the foreseeable future with nothing even tentatively planned until the end of June. The chances of hosting any in-person meetings for the remainder of this year are highly uncertain.
For someone used to traveling as much as three weeks each month and thrives on being able to work with people face to face outside the office on a regular basis… I’m struggling.
I was looking forward to some great trail running this Spring. Plans were made to see some great friends and explore new trails. Now, I’m finding myself in my home office, in front of a computer screen, trying to figure out how I can pivot everything for the year to virtual experiences. And to top it off, I’ve maxed out on my vacation days at a time when I can’t go anywhere. When content creation and office time are literally my least favorite parts of the job, this sucks.
Farmers and ranchers are mad with markets dropping while others in the supply chain appear to be making money as consumers rushed grocery stores to leave shelves empty. I get daily messages from people who want someone to blame and people are angry and frustrated.
But, you know what? It’s ok to be a little overwhelmed right now. Thank goodness I have a job, a home and am still able to work from home. And of course, I love running and that can still take place.
I purchased the Peloton bike and tread last fall. Those are coming in handy seeing as it’s still snowing and cold in Colorado (We had five cold weather records set this week). And I’m fortunate to live outside of town where I can run on dirt roads all day or have easy access to trail running.
I’ve kept up my training plan with hopes that I’ll still be able to run my 100-mile race in August. I’ve been working up to this goal for literally years. Runs in late June and July would be a nice bonus.
Still Trail Running
The past few weeks have been 50-mile training weeks and I’ve already run 500 miles for the year. I’ve discovered I can run up to 30 miles on the dirt roads without backtracking or doubling up on any of the route.
This morning, I headed out to the Greenland Open Space for the first time this season. It’s about a half-hour from my house on back roads and is a spot I hit up often with an 8-mile loop with a few good hill climbs. It can be a windy spot, so I have to time trips well with the weather. It was my first run on some trails (not dirt roads) in a few weeks.
I needed today’s run more than I knew.
Perfect Trail Running
For the first two hours, I was sailing. It was one of those runs where you fall into a rhythm and the miles just click. I surprised myself cruising up the first hill to set a new PR for the segment. Then, I plugged in a few good running podcasts and zoned out. It was peaceful, to say the least.
When I got back to the trail head, I sat down on a picnic table. Despite everything going on in the world today, there are a few things we can control. When #StayAtHome orders lift, we won’t be done with #SocialDistancing and will have to adjust for a long-term recovery.
A New Normal Ahead
Maybe, if we’re lucky, we can keep the to-go and delivery margaritas. And maybe Zoom happy hours – but I’d rather have my conversations at the brewery with friends.
Those who resist change will find themselves frustrated. The past few weeks have shown we are capable of creative solutions to the challenges we encounter.
And at the end of the day, I can still head out my door for quiet trail running and hit the reset button when it’s most needed. I hope you have that opportunity for release in your life.
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