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I started running-jogging-walking about a year ago. I am 42 and have moved from 3k to 5k and completing them at around 11;50 with some walking. But I am not like the other runners in my family. One of my sisters runs with friends and is working up to half marathons. My other sister only does odd races like warrior dash. I don't like running with others. I can't stand getting on a treadmill. I flat out dislike flat roads, but get me at the bottom of a hill and I get giddy and pass everyone. I enjoy running at the beach on the moving sand, avoiding obsticles. The other day it poured rain, and the next morning I went to the local lake and as soon as I got on the mud and the drenched grass I was in the zone. I would swear I had run only a few minutes but it had been longer and I had by my gps done almost 4 miles. What kind of "runner" am I? How can I train to get faster and stronger if what I really enjoy is solitude and getting in a low stance or leaping around in the mud? Am I even considered a runner? Any ideas would be great!! Thanks
I believe you are ... a trail runner.
It's really nothing to worry about ;-) , just steer clear from main roads and find the closest hills and just climb them up and down once and again... Consider practising Orienteering as you might enjoy it.
As for training, i think the idea is that you have to find the type of environment were you feel confortable and just stick to it. I personally am more of a lonely-flat-deserted country road type of runner so all I have to do is get the right type of music. Of course you will not always be able to get to your "perfect" running scenario, but going there from time to time will also help you get motivated on everyday runs as they will help you enjoy your mountain runs even more.
5k: 20:12 (December 31st 2012)
10k : 44:30 (November 6th 2011, March 18th 2012)
Half Marathon: 1:35:27 (February 3rd 2013)
Recently running half marathons. Six completed so far. Now looking for number 7. Once I get to 10 I will start thinking about full marathons.
Maybe check out http://www.spartanrace.com/ or http://www.xterraplanet.com/races/ Basically, there are a lot of opportunities if you do prefer trail running, obstacle courses or more challenging conditions. I have only done one of these events, so I really am not the best reference. (I do not prefer them, but a lot of people really thrive in the environment, so it just depends on what motivates your performance and what you personally enjoy).
Wishing you all the best!
Thanks you Jasko123 and ydiez for your replys. I will definately check out the sites. Checked into the Warrior Dash after one of my sisters told me about it, and really didn't think that was my thing. For me I want to get faster and be able to go farther but it's all about the journey in between. I love not knowing whats around the bend, if I may see something new (scared a chipmonk the other day but his jumping scared me back ) to see how the land changes from season to season and from storms and such. I don't run to beat someone elses time (I run against myself and my own time) or to prove that I am not scared to jump over fires...I just enjoy my time to be one with the paths I find. I guess my original question was just to make sure that it was ok to call myself a runner even if I don't fit societies norms or my sister's for running.
Any more advice on training for the way I run always appreciated and any other links to trails and trail runs!
Tears92, you are definitely a trail runner. There is probably a support group in your area. Try searching at http://www.trailrunner.com/ .
Training for trail racing is (easily enough) running trails. Run a combination of hills and flats, some singletrack, some dirt road, beach and grass running. Mix up your speeds.
I don't know where you are, but do a Google search for trail events in your area. There are more of us trail runners around than you think! We're just not as flashy as the road runners.
Yes, you certainly seem to be a trail runner. If you are near San Francisco, or ever want to travel there, the Muir Woods Half Marathon or 7 miler might be something to aspire to. I don't think I would ever be up to it, but sounds like a unique experience. - http://www.envirosports.com/default.asp?PageID=20879
I definitely relate to your preference for trails and the unexpected. I do a little of both, and yes, I call myself a runner.
As the concensus shows, you're definitely a runner - but how you choose to lable yourself is really up to you ...you seem to know what you like and what makes you happy - so do that and don't worry about the labels, there's no litmus test on what makes one a runner, no required distance or pace - more than anything it's about gettting out and doing - for some people it maybe the treadmill and a 14 minute mile and for others it may be an ultra - and there's plenty of people who 'train' but never 'race.' It's unfortunate - and unnecessary - that we all get categorized by the clock - but with the goals and rewards of 'racing' I guess it's a necessary evil.
So yes, if you want to call yourself a Trail Runner go for it - but I think one of the biggest lessons I've learned since I started running about 7 years ago is to NOT believe whatever notions I have about WHO I am - or what 'type' of runner I am ....I said an old back injury (bulging disk) meant I shouldn't run at all - until I did, and it was fine; I was a fish out of water at first so I convinced myself I enjoyed running alone - until I joined a group and made new friends and loved that too; so I convinced myself I could run, but vowed to NEVER run two days in a row - until I started running 6 days a week; I said I'd never feel like I could 'compete' so I didn't want to do races - until I did my first 5k and couldn't wait to do my second; I said I wasn't 'built' for running and couldn't run for more than an hour - until I trained for my first 1/2 half marathon and then my second, and then a full and then an ironman ... well you get the picture .... labels are fine - as long they don't limit what you're willing to try or who you may become ....