Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Bear Swamp Trail Run

The other day last weekend, I ran with my buddy Chris who mountain bikes out at Bear Swamp State Forest. This has been a stomping ground for Chris and I was excited to check it out.  Let me tell you, Bear Swamp is swampy but also has amazing views of the Finger Lakes and has great wide trails for running, xc skiing and mountain biking.  Of course the trails had there nice climbs and the footing was great considering the slop and mud from recent rain.  We ran about 8 miles and the trail loops were super enjoyable and fun. I never been at a recreation facility as this one.  Great wooded trails and the swamp was super cool.  I had a nice easy day in the build-up to the Monster Mash 3.55 miler and it was great prep for the race.  I ran a fast 17:23 for 3.55 miles and though felt tired still performed like a true champion.  I must say that the Fall season and Winter season are so spectacular. They represent the coming of a time, of an age for nature and for life.  We begin to hibernate during this time but also are giving the chances to reflect on our lives and to foster our bonds with friends and family. It is a time about being thankful for the life you have and for the magic and mysticism of Christmas and Santa Claus.  It is a time to be outdoors and enjoy nature in its purest form.  Yes, many people dislike the cold, but I take it as a blessing as colder temperatures mean that it is time to prepare for another year and to run and live the best I can.  Life is precious and the memories and bonds we make are eternal.

What a lot of people do not understand about running is that is does bring a person closer to the natural environment. Not only am I immersed in the elements but my feet feel every rock and clamber of dirt, I breath in fresh forest air, I push myself up a steep hill created by nature's forces long ago, I look at the beauty of the natural landscape around me and immerse myself within this realm of modern nature.  Running allows for me to be apart of nature in an active way that helps to improve both my physical health but also mental. I say that running is a great tool and assets for me in terms of being a better human being.  When I run, it is not to be selfish though that may seem what those intentions are being perceived as.  I hope to be great at the sport and bring great fame and support for Ashlee and my family one day but also to help inspire my friends, family, and even that one kid unsure about whether to play basketball or to run and by reading this blog decides to embark on such a journey that makes him the next Ryan Hall of USA distance Running.  You never know. But what  I will say is that if you ever have the chance to run in Upstate New York, do so!  This place is an incredible place to run as it has everything needed for a great running stimulus except high altitude.  Bear Swamp is just one of those great resources we have here in NY.  There are tons of great races here and it keeps on getting better.  For now, this is my home and I hope to make the most of it. Whether this will be the end-all place for me and Ashlee who knows but  I will say that as of now, Cortland works for where we are in our lives and truly home is where YOU make it.  If you have the elements you desire as a person, then that is all you need.  RUN Hard America and let us continue to do great things!

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