Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Trail running

My friend and I have recently resumed trail running, once a week. Well, trail "wunning" or "wogging" - maybe "ralking"? Some combination of walking jogging running. We run wearing masks and we keep safe distance from one another. We meet early on a weekend morning, to ensure there are no crowds. We have a favorite park where we meet, and the views these past weeks have been spectacular - sunlight radiating through the branches of the trees, bouncing and shimmering on the creek, highlighting the deep soft green of moss. Let me share a few photos from our last run together - a beautiful, mild morning here in the Washington, D.C. area. 

Funny, when I go out for a jog by myself, the first 10-15 minutes are a negative monologue along the lines of - "this sucks!", "oh my goodness, I don't think I can do this today," "why am I doing this?", "am I moving?" ,"maybe today I will cut this short", "what's wrong with my breath?", "why do I feel so lousy?", and more. If I just make it through those first minutes, I'm fine and I jog with ease for the rest of the run - but I really detest and resist those first minutes by myself on a run.

With my friend, the run is fun from the get-go, from the moment our eyes meet. It's so great! We just go! slowly, slowly, slowly, through the leaves and the mud, over rocks and stumps, under the bare trees, dodging puddles, up, down, and around hilly curves, all the while, chattering, conversing, sharing aloud, together. It's a multi-sensory experience - feeling the cold air, noticing the freshness, hearing the birds and the wind, getting a little messy, seeing such beauty in the woods. It's such a blast. 

These outings have been the perfect antidote to this pandemic, and all this time isolated indoors. Running outdoors clears my head, relaxes me, takes my anxious edge off.  Running feels good, cleansing. I forget my age, forget my size, I just move and enjoy. To be out in the woods with a friend, running and walking trails - ahhh, this is so fantastic! I am blessed.


I wrote this post for Slice of Life.  All participants are writing about one moment, one part of their day, on Tuesdays. Thank you, Two Writing Teachers!


  1. You really sound like you found a key to exercising for you! Congratulations! I enjoy walks on the trails near our house with a friend and with my husband. It's a good 3 mile walk. We don't run but I can relate to the feeling of being outside, in the woods, and the rejuvenation it provides! Thanks for sharing! Carol from The Apples in my Orchard.

  2. I’m always awed by nature photos in the D.C. area. These are spectacular. These days the only running I do is after the dogs when they chase another human’s fur baby. I envy those who can jog and run, but I understand the angst associated w: those first minutes. I feel that way on a bike. You are so right about our need for nature and fresh air.

  3. This sounds absolutely wonderful. I wish I could join you!

  4. Maureen, this does sound wonderful. What joy you have shared here, and the photos are amazing. It makes me look in awe at those trails, or lack of trails, and wonder how you do it. I loved when you said it was a multisensory event and you get messy. It makes total sense! And sounds like a blast! It DOES look and feel like a great antidote.

  5. Your word-twists are too fun (wunning, wogging, ralking) - I so get it. You're so right, the hardest part is just getting going. What a gorgeous setting, though! Those photos just beckon one to come enjoy while boosting physical - and spiritual - health.