This is my favourite time of year for hiking but unfortunately I’ve been late to this party.
Normally by mid-October I’d already have a number of hikes under my belt. What’s not to love … no bugs, cooler temperatures, and all while watching nature slowly transform into a stunning colour spectacle.
But I haven’t been out. I blame an early introduction to the cold-and-flu season. So even though I was still obsessing over my low energy level and annoying cough, my hiking buddy, Helen, finally dragged a very reluctant me out onto the trail last weekend.
Her choice was the nearby Seaton Trail northeast of the city.
My reluctance was soon overcome by the crisp morning temperature, beautiful clear skies, and the calm I feel whenever I step into any cluster of trees.
I don’t normally like walking the same routes over and over and I’d been on the Seaton Trail so many times, I didn’t think I’d have any excitement left to give.
I was wrong and Helen was right. I don’t know why I even bother arguing with Helen anymore. She’s always right. Maybe that’s one of the reasons why she’s called “Queen of The Trails” within the community of ultra-runners to which she belongs.
Ultra-runners look like normal people and walk among us without fanfare, but they’re really not ‘normal’ at all. I’m talking about runners who think 50, 75, and 100-mile trail races are a reasonable thing to do.
Yes, I really did mean ‘miles’.
Many of Helen’s ultra friends were on the trail that morning for a ‘short’ 90 minute run, with some socializing to follow. A trail crowded with high-octane runners was not my idea of a good time … but again, I was wrong.
It was like a homecoming party.
These are people who work hard and then play hard. They came prepared with chairs, blankets, and coolers with food and drink.
Who cares if it was 11 am on a Sunday morning. The beer was flowing, conversation was lively, and snack foods were making the rounds.
The moral of this story?
If your spirits are low, get outdoors. If your energy is sagging and you’re wondering where you’re going to get the strength to even get dressed, get yourself out there!
Nature is a wonder drug.