Sunday 6 November 2011

Hitting the trail again

This morning's view from my window
     As I awoke this morning and gazed across the fields, another beautiful day was dawning, so I couldn't resist an early breakfast before donning my trail shoes and getting out there to do what my body is designed to do - RUN. A faint blue haze still lingered in the valley from all the bonfires and firecrackers of Saturday's Guy Fawkes night, but overhead the sky was almost cloudless. An autumn nip in the air made conditions ideal for running.
Since cracking my rib(s) the farthest I've run over the last four weeks is half a dozen 120m repetitions across a cricket field (left of top picture) to assess just how much pain levels would be affected during exercise. I found it was OK so long as I wasn't expanding my chest too much (as if I could!) by panting too heavily or breathing too deeply. 
    So off I went, somewhat nervously, for a slightly longer run over a route I often write about in this Blog, the three mile circuit of our local landmark, Castle Hill.  I reasoned that if my breathing did become laboured enough to cause distress, I could always walk a little till I was back into my comfort zone.  I was trialling a pair of New Balance MT101's that fit like gloves, superbly snug and comfortable.  
The view towards Emley Moor television mast
    Surprisingly I didn't seem to have lost any of my speed as I began the gradual ascent through a field of newly calved cows, past trees displaying their autumn dream coats, out onto the rough track along Clough Hall Lane, then up the final steep slope to the table-top summit.  I was not alone up there. The sunshine had brought out car loads of Sunday morning strollers - most of them with dogs - and all of them with cheery 'good mornings' as I loped past.  
    I stopped only briefly to drink in the gorgeous panoramic views, to Holme Moss and Emley Moor with their towering media masts and across scores of miles of urban sprawl to the whizzing wind farm by the wuthering heights of Haworth, one time home of the famed Bronte sisters.  My descent was a little cautious at first to limit any jarring to my chest but after the steepest bit I was back up to speed again. On a short road section I even managed a measured 0.27 mile between two 'Watch your Speed' signs in 1.36 which, according to my Garmin, equates to 5.58 pace. I was back home in 28 minutes, which is only slightly above average for this hilly route. The animal is happy again. Well, reasonably!!
Clogged up shoes
    Back home I removed my new Trail shoes to find both soles were totally clogged with dirt and would probably have offered no grip at all if the need had arisen. They may be comfortable but I reckon they'll have to be reserved for dryer trails. I believe this shoe was designed for New Balance by one of my running idols, Anton Krupicka, who runs high Colorado peaks like Cameron's Cone and Green Mountain before breakfast, or so I'm told. Maybe he just has a very late breakfast!  I can only assume that Colorado trails are less earthy and more rocky than here in Yorkshire. I'm not knocking the NB MT101 shoe,  for I'm sure it has it's uses in more conducive conditions, but for the coming winter I'll be turning to my tried and trusted Inov-8's, mainly Roclite 315's, or maybe Mudclaws if the ground churns up really squelchy. 


  1. The weather looked good and would better way to spend the morning than out on the trails.

    I will be back on the tails after my marathon in 2 weeks. (except for the track race)

  2. That sounds like a great route. It must be great to be back running agin!

  3. Cracking blog with lovely photies. That beach right at the top, is it in Cornwall?


  4. Paul, thanks for your comments and yes, the beach is at Holywell Bay just south of Crantock in Cornwall.

  5. Hi! I forwarded your blog address to one of my blogging buddies named Paul who is a runner who lives in New Zealand. He has lots of great running adventures like you do. You'd like him.

    :-) Marion

  6. Glad to catch up with another fanatical runner. Marion gave me your blog address nd I look forward to following your running adventures. I've been running for 40 years and have loved it with a passion.

  7. So glad you're out and about again RF. I think our American friends have a different idea of what constitutes a 'trail' - much more hard-packed and graded than our marshy, muddy, stony affairs. So it's Roclites for us! I'm tempted to try some Mudclaws too, for those farmland routes.