Don’t get lost in the woods: Why I am not a boy scout!

OK OK I’m probably not a boy scout because I am lacking in the penile department…aside from this small feature, it’s also because I am a city girl. Now, I’m not one of those city girls like Carrie Bradshaw hangs out with, but I’m probably only different from them in the shoes and clothes sense. When I was younger I went with my Mom’s coworker while they were turkey hunting. My job was to babysit the small children. On this trip I learned turkeys sleep in trees. I also pointed to a group of cows and said “what weird looking horses!” or maybe you can switch the cows/horses but the point was…I became known as “city girl”.

Fast forward to May 21, 2010…I’m no longer in school and I’m not suffering from OMG I NEED A NAP NOW! So I agree to try this group training run. As we all know I have not been working out. On Sunday I completed the half, on Tuesday I did 20 mins on the ellip, Wed I did the Ride of Silence (our ride was roughly 13.5) and then last night I attempt to run 5-6 miles in the woods. What’s wrong with me?

We start off from the parking lot and I’m feeling pretty good. I find a rhythm and I just want to stay with the group. About a half mile into it I realize Garmin is off! Grrr. So we start into the woods and immediately I wonder how much of a workout I signed up for. Up giant hills, down giant hills, all covered is slippery mud! Across bridges that shake and are missing boards and you need to leap onto them in the first place. OK it’s not AS BAD as this picture but it felt like it!

I hang back a time or two because I don’t want to leave Gale…and we become VERY behind the rest of the group. We’re doing our thing and she’s not happy any time there is mud and I just go right into it…hey I bought trail shoes for a reason didn’t I? After a while I just feel like I HAVE to run and so I take off in front of them. Leaping into water, climbing up edges that start at my hip (gotta love being short) and just loving the experience. Part of me feels like I’m in a movie, but it’s one of the rear times I’m having FUN. Maybe because I know it’s not a race and so there’s no one judging my time. Everything is beyond words beautiful and I just feel amazing. I suppose proper diet + working out = life is AWESOME not just good but awesome. Only thing? I was only 2 miles into the run! Sheesh!

Occasionally I’d hear Gale yell for me and I’d yell back so I didn’t think we were too far apart. I mean I’m really not THAT fast or good. I was being stupid and selfish tough. I was having too much fun on my own and knew I should have hung back with my friend…the one with the directions. And I was just being cocky because for ONCE in all the years we’ve been running…I was doing better than Gale, and I liked it. Two people ran past me in the other direction and I waved hello. I could hear them talking to Gale & her partner in crime for a lil…but then they were up behind me again. I managed to match their pace for a while…having people certainly makes you wanna go faster. We go over more rivers and ledges past a field of GIANT plants. It felt like the cabbage patch on crack. We talk about The Neverending Story and how both of us girls would wear necklaces on our heads and pretend to be the princess. I later learn these two folks are Rachel and Dan. I learn even later Rachel is a part of the famous Vertical Runners.

The three of us reach a clearing and we are WAY ahead of the other two. We believe this is the part where you split from Buckeye Trail and follow Valley. So we make a left and go the less rocky looking way. I’m sad to not be on the BT anymore, it was so pretty and such a great work out. I felt like a real athlete when moving along the course. We get up to a road and I recognize it as a part of the CVNP trail hike spree from a year or two ago. It’s also where my family and I got lost because it’s so poorly marked. We travel over a mile up road until we get to a real road and we see a sign that we’re in Brecksville. WTF? A girl drives by in a car and tells us we’re near RT 21. NOT where we want to be. Hmm. We turn around and go all the way back to the forest…talking along the way and noticing we’ve been at this for 90 minutes and like 5 miles. Rachel leads us down this other path, knowing we don’t want to go all the way back to Buckeye. We hit a dead end after climbing through some bushes. At this point we can hear the road and almost see the clearing so the three of us just take off into the forest. I am praying the whole time we don’t walk in anything alive or poisonous. After a while we’re in grass that I swear was up to my knees and we are just going through this field trying to get to the road! What a short cut…what an adventure. We jump over a gate and we’re on a road. As we start to walk someone drives by…and we learn we are in fact ON Riverview…YIPPIE the road we want!!! We shuffle along up the road, until Rachel decided she can run to her car and pick us up. Off she goes. More power to her. My left hurt and we’re 6 miles into this. I wasn’t in pain, but I sure wasn’t running more. It was A LOT for me to do my first week back into training.

She arrives with the car and I turn off Garmin. Mine doesn’t read 7 but remember I turned her on late. We arrive at the parking lot and there is Gale waiting for me…about to call the National Guard or something. I love her. We agree to at least take our phone from now on…even if we always stay together.

It wasn’t the trail run I was expecting. Two hours later thought I was done and I was happy. I didn’t mind getting lost and Rachel and Dan were two of the nicest people to wonder off with and have a good time. I’ll go back next week. I might make sure to have my phone and a map though!

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