Busy Weekend at Bastrop State Park

I love sleeping until I want to get up, reading the newspaper at leisure with a cup of hot tea, and having the windows in the house open. It’s nice and quiet, as my guys are off doing things (boy at cross country, hubby biking). I like the me time.

Saturday was my long run day, and I went out to Bastrop State Park.  I needed to do 20 miles according to my new coach, Diana with Tejas Trails (she’ll be getting me ready for the 50-miler at Rocky Raccoon in February); I had figured I’d need to do 4:30–5:00 hours of running. She suggested two 10-mile loops, a combination of the purple trail (which I’ve done a zillion times) and the red trail (which was new to me).

For the first lap, I had company (two girl friends and two guys who were new to me). The guys peeled off at the cut-off in the purple loop, and we three girls went on to finish the red trail. One (Alicia) had done the trail before and she guided us in. I felt great!

I took about 10 minutes at the car, eating some crackers, refilling, and, yes, chatting. Then, I was ready to get back to it…but others were still hanging out, so I took off on my own. I decided to do the second loop backwards to make it more interesting. I was feeling quite fiesty when I ran into my friend Stephanie coming to the trail end. Hmmm…she had gotten lost on the spurs and obviously added quite a bit of mileage, as I should never have seen her, being so much slower.

We parted ways…and I promptly took a wrong turn, ending up somewhere on the blue trail. I was pretty sure the blue would take me back to the red, but I decided to back track to figure out what I’d done wrong (and I had no issue with adding a bit, since I was figuring I would do my 20 in about 4:25 and I wanted more time on my feet).

As I was looking around to see what I’d missed, I managed to find the only rocks in the whole park, catch my right foot, and go down on my hip onto said rocks. Oh, my. THAT hurt. I brushed off the pine needles and kept moving. I got all the way back to where I’d seen Stephanie and then turned around. There it was, where I’d gone wrong, so I got back on the red trail.

I wound up making another stop at the park bathroom to clean up pine needles, dirt, and blood (I think the lady at the sink next to me objected to both my sweatiness and general dirtiness). The fall honestly took a little bit out of me. But I love the purple loop backwards! There is a fair amount of downhill, which makes you realize how much uphill there is the other way. I did see several other people going the opposite way, and that was fun. I even got to see Stephanie again.

I have to admit that I got a bit off in the last three miles, as I had completely misjudged where I was and forgot that the last bit was going to be uphill. I think I walked a fair portion of the last mile. I popped out of the woods at 4:40 total time on my feet, including the two bathroom stops and 10 minutes of refueling. I did somewhere between 20–22 miles and that was good.


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Published by Leah Nyfeler

I'm a writer, editor, runner, and adventurer who is always looking for the next new story, exciting adventure, and good meal/book/movie. My focus is on helping people find their best, healthiest self through sharing what I know and how I've come to learn it. In addition to my blog "Enjoying the Journey: Observations on the Fit Life" at www.leahruns100.com, my articles have appeared in a variety of print and online magazines. You can hear me as part of the 2015 Austin cast of Listen To Your Mother.

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