Forgetting How To Run + Learning to Love Snowy Trails
A whole eight weeks ago I waxed poetically about running, just because. I talked about getting back into the running bit on my own terms. Running when I wanted to, hiking when I could + using Max as my excuse to get outside. Ha. Yea…no. That is not what happened. Instead, I’ve completely forgotten how to run.
As someone who has called herself a “long distance runner” for the past few years this felt a little weird at first. But, right now, I’m loving it. I have no pressure to get outside + run X miles before a 14 hour work day. Instead, I’ve been strapping on gaiters, snowshoes or a splitboard before heading out the backdoor with Max leading the way. These outings rarely have any destination or goal — I’m just headed outside to see what the world has to offer. This has led to discovering a few new routes + witnessing some of Mother Nature’s truly stunning beauty.
In the past week I’ve stashed my running shoes in the back of my borrowed closet + acquired a new pair of fancy pants splitboard bindings [borrowed for the season, because I’m cheap like that]. I’ve owned my splitboard for a handful of years but I’ve used it for far fewer treks into the snowy wilderness than I care to admit. When we started getting heaps of snow each day I re-rigged my standard bindings to my splitboard + used it like a pair of cross county skis for mini-Max-ventures. It wasn’t perfect, but it did the trick, keeping me from sinking into the thigh deep snow that blanketed my “backyard”.
We even went so far as to skin up some nicely groomed trails at Keystone. Our motivation was to get Robb some splitboard experience but I also wanted to cruise down a groomer or two. For the first time in nearly two years I missed the gusty wind in my face + the green filter created by my goggles as I let a snowboard throw me down a mountainside. I missed snowboarding. Finally!
This newfound desire to spend time scooting around on my splitboard is refreshing. It’s something new. Something exciting + motivating. Rather than attempt to redirect these “oh, let’s get up at 5am + freeze our bums off in the snow” feelings into running I’m just rolling with them. I’m truly letting myself forget how to run. In the process of “letting myself go” I am discovering my mind + body don’t need running to get outside + love on life. I finally understand the conundrum my snow-loving friends had when it came to spring races.
Of course, that doesn’t mean my running shoes won’t get put to good use…once the snow melts. I do have my name on a bib for the Bear 100, I can’t forget how to run forever.