Is there a trail under this mud?

Stop me if you’ve heard this before.

Don't bother trying to go around it. The mud is everywhere.

Don't bother trying to go around it. The mud is everywhere.

It rained all day yesterday. This morning, the trails were a sloppy mess. I ran trails anyway. I had a great time. My socks will never be clean again.

OK, that’s pretty much the whole story. It’s also the story of this entire spring. It has rained and rained and rained. The trails never get a chance to dry. I think I could find the words “mud” and “rain” at least 50 times on this blog, in just the last couple of months.

But if you’re a trail runner, you just can’t sit around and wait for perfect weather.  Especially if you’re training for the The Big Race. You do what you need to do.

I went out to Fort Ben again this morning for a little sweet lovin’ with the trails. The weather was great — cool and clear. But the trails, of course, were slushy and splashy.

I thought I might bump into Terry, the guy I met yesterday. But I didn’t see him. Then again, we hadn’t set an exact time and place to meet, just somewhere around 8 a.m. was how we left it. I did a quick sweep of the parking lots at all four trailheads, but didn’t spot his car. So at 8:10, I pulled on my trail shoes and got going on a solo run.

I ran two loops of the Lawrence Creek Trail — a rolling, rocky, muddy Jeep road, with a bit of singletrack. It’s about two miles around. I did two loops (plus the long, hilly trailhead) in 36 minutes. I was getting nice and warmed up, and would have liked to run one or two more loops. But I was out of time. I had to get home and showered, and to work.

Still, four or five miles of rough trail was nothing to sneeze at.

 Tomorrow, I’ll get an earlier start.

********************************

This is what I would like to see in Indy some day.

Yep, dozens of runners all ready for a challenging, 15-mile fun run on the trails. In this case, it was the Buckeye Trail near Akron, Ohio.

It wasn’t a race. It wasn’t a private running club. It was a fairly spontaneous get-together of friends and strangers, all brought together by one enthusiastic trail runner who showed a little leadership and made it happen.

Nick Billock, who blogs here, said he posted an invitation for the group run on the Vertical Runner message board a few days beforehand, and expected maybe five or 10 people to show up. Instead, about 50 people crowded into the parking lot for a two-hour run.

So what can we do in Indy about this? Well, this very week, a few trail runners have started a new social networking site that is designed to spread the word about trail runs, workouts, cool trails, news, races and other info. All trail runners are welcome to join. The web site is: http://indianatrailrunning.ning.com

Let’s spread the word about trail running! You have nothing to lose but pavement and misery!

It would be great if the web site actually helped us pull runners together for training runs, so we could get turn-outs like the one in the photo above.  Way to go, Nick.

********************************

I can’t tell whether my old friend Kevin is pulling my leg or is in for the shock of his life.

Kevin is a road runner in Ohio who just qualified for the Boston Marathon with a great run at the Cleveland Marathon last month. He has been taking a week or two of well-deserved rest, and blogging about his next big challenge: the Buckeye Trail 50K, which is the race I’m also training for.

I can’t do justice to Kevin’s latest post. Read if yourself here.

Kevin: please run some trails already!

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