Saturday, December 18, 2010

First Snow Trail Run

Awoke this morning to a beautiful Saturday skies, -4C, no wind and a coating of gloriously white puffy snow over the HRM to add some color to the grey wet weather we have been experiencing of late.

For a brief moment I planned on a bike ride but my fears of black ice upon wet pavement just does not thrill me as I have experienced that particular hazard one to many times for my liking.Instead I headed to the market for some grass fed beef and free range eggs while enjoying the atmosphere of the Seaport Farmer's market complete with a cup of French roast.

Quick stop at the Virgin Mobile kiosk to pick up a gift for my daughter then home to gear up for a trail run. I have experienced a renaissance in my running after I decided getting "faster" and running "farther" was no longer my(only) objective. What I have been doing now is more akin to cross country trail running over undulating terrain, natural obstacles and fields at varying intensities. I avoid the city noises, pedestrians and traffic while running on ground that is far easier on my body than concrete and pavement.

Within a stone's throw of my neighborhood is the Powerline trail and to my surprise I discovered a series of side trails and fireroads adjacent to the Mainland Commons.Comprised of marshy spots,rocky sections and streams it makes for a challenging and fun course, especially if you run it at a fast tempo.
The real nice thing is the quiet. The city noise and the constant roar of vehicles is muted by the trees so it gives you the illusion that you are away from the urban sprawl. Priceless!Having run to the Powerline Trail I did a loop of the side trail then exited upon a softball field where I did some sets of bench jumps and walking lunges.
I then followed the path created by a cross country skier who was obviously anxious to take advantage of the first snowfall of the winter back to the side trails where I ran a second loop.Passed a dog walker and another runner but other than that it was a solitary endeavor for the most part and quite enjoyable.

A brief moment to catch my breath and absorb as much of the fresh air while loving the silence and beams of sunlight filtering through the trees and then back on the run homeward bound to complete my 6km workout with some medicine ball and Swiss ball routines.

My Swiss ball exercises are the basic routines that target the upper and lower abs along with the obliques. I also do some additional lower back movements as well to strengthen my(weaker) set of muscles that were the cause of my low back pain in the past. Medicine ball routines are comprised of Russian twists,chops, squats and overhead presses and I will occasionally incorporate some(or all) into compound movements.
Last winter I was preoccupied with the idea of losing weight and getting skinny to help make me a better climber on the bike. My initial success going paleo helped realize that goal as my weight dropped to the low 190's and I did have a successful racing season. That said I have since stabilized at that weight and I no longer feel the need to starve myself to get any lighter. To be honest I don't want to be a skinny bike racer. I am embracing being a(cycling)clydesdale....race success be damned. I like where I am, I feel great and my overall health is rock solid.This winter I want to focus upon overall strength and conditioning which will help with all my activities;cycling, ball hockey and running. If I experience further weight loss that is a bonus but I will no longer be a slave to the scale.

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