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I recently rediscovered the gravity-defying benefits of treadmills.  Turns out, I can run pretty fast on those things.  I’d forgotten that when I returned to fitness years ago, I first started out by walking, and then evolved to running on treadmills before finally pounding the pavement again.  It’s a progression that works.  So most of my runs the last couple of weeks have been on the treadmill at the office.  Seriously, it feels like I’m actually running again on those things.

I still run the trails on the weekends but it’s time to start picking up my game.  I tried to defer my October Trailfest event again but they wouldn’t let me.  Turns out you can’t keep putting things off.  This event has rules.  I paid a hefty registration fee last year and I can’t just let it go.  I’m running it.  Or walking it.  Whatever gets me from start to finish.

Knowing I’m committed now is exciting.  Lose ten pounds or die is the way I feel right now.  Each of the 3-day half marathons have cut-off times to reach their respective aid stations.  It would be helpful if they shared the actual times, it’s a little scary not knowing.

I decided to move on from my weekend routine of the pedestrian East Boulder Trail to a real mountain trail.  I ran Heil Valley Ranch today.  Last time I tried it I don’t think I made it to the top of the Wapiti trail.  I did today, and ran the shorter loop up top – seven and a half miles in all.  That’s my longest run in half a year.

This is a real trail.  Rocky.  Technical.  The two and a half mile climb was hard enough on my lungs, but managing my footfalls was also surprisingly difficult.  I expect to be able to regain my trail skills if I get out there every weekend, but conditioning is part of the process.  Running slow helps but you have to be strong enough to pick up your feet.  I’ll continue to run on the treadmill at the office during the week, but I’m done pussyfooting around on the weekends.  I’m back on the mountain trails.