As the youngest of five kids, growing up, I often felt like I was the last one to be included: the last to learn about something – “Oh yeah, we already know about that…”; the last to try something – “I’ve been doing that for ages…”; or the last to be invited – “Mom, do we really have to bring him along…?”
Okay, so no doubt, it wasn’t quite that bad. (I was, after all, always the first to go to bed!).
Youngest-sibling-whining issues aside, throughout my life, this feeling of being late to the party has been a pretty common theme. Organized trail running isn’t an exception. Although I have been running all my life, and I have always liked running in forests and on trails more than on the roads, I feel like I fairly recently found out about this great party that’s been going on for awhile without me. Although I would like to blame my siblings for hiding that from me as well (!), the reality is that other things like work and family kept me occupied enough to not actively seek it out and probably gloss over it when it did land on my radar.
My first trail race in about 25 years was about four years ago: the fun and challenging Pick Your Poison race put on by Adam Hill and Heather Dunlop at the Heights of Horseshoe. I was hooked. At the age of 49, I abandoned the idea of more sprinting, which required travelling a significant distance to run round and round on a track, and opted for trail running, which are aplenty in our area, are easier on the body and provide countless mental and emotional benefits in addition to the physical ones. I simply didn’t get all of that from sprinting.
Since then, I’ve discovered a plethora of trail race opportunities catering to virtually every interest – from distance to terrain to season. And the number of trail running options and races just keeps growing.
So, if you’re like me and are thinking it’s seemingly too late in life to start trail running but you really want to anyway, don’t despair. Find that group, find that race or contact us and we’ll help you find something. You’re not too late. Instead, I like to think we’re just fashionably late with lots to bring to the party.
Oh, and by the way, it’s now great to be the youngest, even if I have one brother who likes trying to convince the world he’s the youngest: “I’m the youngest, and Robb’s the baby…” 🙂