Tuesday, May 1, 2012


It's spring. The trees blossom, fresh blades of grass make their way thru the leaf covered forest floor & as the weekly mileage amplifies in preparation for summer running so does the calling of the trail. If you are a lover of single-track you understand.

Somewhere between the first blizzard and the final thaw I became innately familiar with the city again. This happens every year. I leave my front door and know how to route 6,10 or 20 miles in pretty much every direction. 

There is a certain degree of comfort that comes with that. Comfort in knowing what pace it takes to avoid a string of red lights, which gas stations sell the best granola bars & chilled water by the gallon or the steepest cloverleaf to pound out some hill repeats in.

The sound of traffic, the chirp of street lights & the constant whirr of wind the symphony for my feet. I love the city I live & run in. I love that each spring the streets come alive with people training for the marathon. But eventually those very conveniences, those symphonies, begin to wear making me feel trapped and crowded. 

I long for silence where the only man-made sound I hear is my footsteps in the leaves. To smell the green prairie grasses instead of gas or fast-food greases. The chance to actually get lost, to discover something new. To go on an adventure in any direction, then find that familiar trail that leads you back to where you started.

Last week I went back to where it all started. Well, back to where all of my trail-running started. After four hours of mostly single-track, some strategic fell-running around flooded areas and stopping to take pictures instead of for a stoplight, I was free.

"Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come, the cooing of doves is heard in our land. The fig tree forms its early fruit; the blossoming vines spread their fragrance. Arise, come, my darling; my beautiful one, come with me.” Song of Songs 2:12 & 13