You take the Good, You Take the Bad…

And there you have the facts of life!20160828_084101

Hmm… sounds familiar!  One of my favorite TV shows growing up and the theme song was stuck in my head as I was out for my run this morning!

I will be honest, it was NOT even close to a good run.  Yes, I was out there getting it done, but it wasn’t pretty.

I set out on my favorite 6-ish mile loop to the airport and back but within the first mile, I knew that loop was going to be a struggle.  I struggled to hit my pace.  I was already dreading the next 5 miles.  I know that my miles have been down lately, combination of too much going on, and still nursing a tweaked tendon in my ankle.  But I knew that I needed some miles today to get ready for my half next weekend.  Today,  I’m not sure if it was the fact that I was probably over dressed, bored with running the same streets again or if it was just that my head was not in it.

I hit about 1.5 miles and was ready to turn around and head for home.

And then I saw it…

The entrance to the trails near the middle school…

I have20160828_082011 not run on these trails since last year, but all of a sudden, something told me that was the way that I needed to go.

I headed across the parking area.  From the time my feet this the dirt, something felt different.  It was a refreshing, freeing feeling.  The twists, turns, and tree roots felt like they were flying by.

The next mile, while on the the trails was a completely different run.

I think that after all the miles I did on the trails at UWGB earlier this year and then out at High Cliff for Cliff Runner 10k, I needed to get back to the trails.  Running these trails, I felt like I was one with the trees and squirrels (even tho a few of those squirrels scared the crap out of me when they would jump from the trees and take of through the leaves  LOL).

Running the trails is a completely different feeling.  Being out there, surrounded by the sounds of nature, the natural beauty and the peacefulness really can change your outlook! I am sitting here trying to really explain the feeling I get when I running trails, and words just cannot do it justice.  I am sure that all of my trail running friends out there can understand where I am coming from.  It’s just a freeing feeling.  Gone are the worries of the day.  Gone is the stress of every day life.  It’s just me, the trees, the trail and the relaxing sounds.

It’s not always about speed.  It’s about taking a step back to enjoy, reflect and take a mental break!20160828_082458

Don’t get me wrong, I am a half marathon junkie at heart.  I love the challenge.  I love seeing new cites when I can run new places. Plus I have met some of my best friends during those races.  Half Marathons are in my blood… but there’s something more.

Yes, in the end today, my final distance this morning was only half of what I set out to do.  I struggled to get it done.  But in the end, after really thinking about it over the last few hours, I was able to pull something positive out of what could have been listed as a failure.

No matter what you are training for, working for or dreaming about, there will be ups and downs.  You will have good days, you will have bad days.  In the end, no matter what kind of day it is, be sure to take a step back and see what you can learn from it!

What are your struggles?  what have you learned from them?  Remember, if you are not learning, you are not growing!



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