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Hiking The Green Monster Trails

This year has been a particular kind of challenging for me. I like to do big adventures. I like to push my physical limits. Run all the miles. Climb all the mountains. And now even biking. But the last two years and especially this year has seen me battling small nagging injuries that have limited my ability to participate in these types of adventures.

This fun adventure to tackle some trails has been on my calendar most of the year. It has shifted and evolved over time, but I am super happy with how everything turned out. I could not have asked for more. It was really just what I needed.

The plan to hike the approximately 16 mile loop of the Green Monster Trail System in PA was falling at the end of a period of time where I had been doing zero running for over 2 months. My longest time without running in many years. I was actually a bit nervous about this adventure. Not really because of the injury I was working in PT now to recover from, but because I had not done anything this hard or adventurous since early spring and only twice in two years. And normally even when I don’t have any big efforts upcoming I am still training to at least maintain my base fitness. But I have not been doing that all year.

Green Monster Trails

I was as little concerned that this was going to feel very hard and not be as enjoyable as I was hoping. I knew this terrain. I had run this terrain. I knew it was challenging on my best days of running. I was far from my best days of physical performance. I was hoping for the best.

I met up with my friends and we set off. The vibe right off the bat was great and was forgetting about my nerves. We hiked the route in the opposite direction I have regularly experienced it in during running. And that was a refreshing change and stimulation for my brain. I felt like I was able to see this as an even newer and fresher adventure. It was completely different seeing the trails in reverse.

We hiked and we talked. Moving out bodies. Working hard. Getting rained on.

We continued to hike. The sun peaked out. Just a tease. More rain soon followed. It was a cool fall day. The rain wasn’t ideal, but working hard and moving along these rugged trails made the rain barely a consideration. I was wearing shorts and a light t-shirt and I felt fine just about the entire time.

I am so thankful for a group of friends coalescing to move through the woods together and experience nature. Pushing and pulling against nature. I need to get out and have more of these experiences more often. More time with friends. More time spent out in nature. More time challenging my body.

See you on the trails.

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