I headed south, not knowing what to expect. The trail is wide and well cared for, with very few weeds but plenty of evidence of wildlife (the horse manure was easy to spot, not so much the other scat. Yuck!).
It was an overcast, cool day perfect for running. I should say it should have been perfect for running if not for some rookie mistakes. Learn from them, chicos and chicas:
- I thought I was pretty smart bringing a bottle full of water and a second one full of Gatorade on my fanny pack, I mean, high-tech water belt. Smart for hydration, yes, but not so much for carrying my phone, which I typically stick in one of the water bottle holders. I ended up sticking it behind the pack on the water belt, which meant adjusting it over and over and headphone wires. I'll be picking up another holder for my Nathan belt before the Capital City River Run half marathon.
- I headed out on an unknown trail with a picture of a map of said trail. But with about 4 miles to go, my phone gave me a low-battery warning. What?! I should have brought the map with me and I also need to find a way to make that battery last longer. That may mean taking fewer pictures during my run (I know, boo. Hiss.) or running without music (no Pitbull?! yeah, that's not happening.).
- My trusty Pandora failed to launch. Um. Yeah. Trails. Thankfully, I had a few songs loaded on my phone, but not nearly enough. Going to spend some time on iTunes this afternoon, just in case this happens again.
- I brought mosquito repellent, but failed to actually apply said repellent before heading out. Instead, I swatted and killed two of the evil bloodsuckers. I stopped to take a picture and finally took the time to use the Off! I brought along, but they'd already taken a few bites.
- With possible rain forecast, I brought a baggie for my phone and my favorite hoodie. Rookie mistake? The hoodie is really best in 40 or 50 degrees, not mid-60s, so I roasted, then spent most of my run adjusting the thing tied around my waist. Next time? Maybe bring a long-sleeve T-shirt. Or do without.
Given all that, it really was a great run. I felt great, I kept a relatively constant pace. And I didn't feel like I was going to die. Bonus.