Last Wednesday night I ran my first trail run of the year. Trail running is a different animal than road running. For one thing sometimes there are actual animals. Being surefooted and aware are just as important as being fast.
I am by no means a fast trail runner. But I am persistent and not afraid to get dirty and those are two important qualities in trail running. I was keeping up with a group of folks who, in a road race would have left me far behind. But the winding trails, mud and roots had slowed them enough to keep them in view. in the last third of the race we rounded a corner in the trail and a freakin’ swamp spread across our path. The others started picking their way around the edges and I knew how I could break away from the pack.
I went through it.
Let me be clear: there were no stakes here. I was not going to win anything and no-one was ever going think better of me for this little action. It wasn’t about being faster, it was about being able to get messy and take the tougher path.