Friday, November 16, 2018

Yes, Virginia, There is a Sun

Ok, after days and days of overcast skies and more than a few rain drops falling not mention cold temps, I was ready for a change. This morning, I walked down my driveway, looked up, and I saw this strange yellow round glowing object in the sky. I had nearly forgot what it looked like.

So, yes, Virginia, there is a Sun up there.

Happy Trails,

The Cool Down Runner

Wednesday, November 14, 2018


I don't know about you but I am ready for Mother Nature to string together several days of dry weather. The cold doesn't really bother me, but the rain can down right chill me to the bone. Based on what the weather man keeps telling, I am not going to see anything in the way of sun until possibly Saturday and hopefully Sunday.

Hey, for those that are worried about drought condition in the Charlotte area, I can only assume that we are well on the surplus side. Just saying.

Happy Trails,

The Cool Down Runner

Sunday, November 11, 2018

32 Consecutive Years of Running

The latter part of October, I crossed the 32 year milestone of running day after day. I wish I could say that I did something special, but I didn’t. I got up, stretched, and headed out the door. I crossed off another day of running and went on with my day.

When other runners learn of my streak, one question frequently tops their list. How do I do it?  For lack of a better answer, I tell them that I don’t think about it. I just go do it. If I took the time to think about it, I might talk myself out of it.

That’s my best advice to anyone. If there is something that you want to do, don’t think about it. Just say, “I am going to do it” and let nothing else interfere with your efforts to do it.

Happy Trails

The Cool Down Runner

Thursday, November 8, 2018

WWC Shot in the Dark 10 Recap 11/2/18

This past Friday night, I headed to the WWC for their Shot in the Dark 10k night race. Of the things gave me pause about this race was the recent rain over the last 24 to 48 hours. In fact the trails at the WWC had been closed much of the week because of the rain. This meant that the trails would be leaf covered and slick.

On my warm up, I found this pretty much to be true.

Both 5k and 10k races start at 7:15 so darkness is well underway. I was sporting my double head lamp combination – wearing one on my head and one at my waist. Going around the channel, the runners were stringing out pretty good. I was thank for this because it was going to allow us to enter the trail without being all jammed up.

I had opted for my trail shoes over my normal racing flats. I hoped that they would give me better traction.

I never went down but I did hit more than a few slick spots. With the leaves covering the trail and everything being wet, I found the trail a bit more difficult to follow in sections.

Given these conditions, I found myself holding back more than usual. To me it was more important to prize my neck over my pace.

After the race I talked to several runners that had gone down. Some of them went down several times. One was even stepped on by another runner.

I placed 10th overall in a time of 48:24. This placed me first in my 50-54 age. Surprisingly, my time as more than 3 and ½ minutes faster than last year. Then, last year, this was really my first night trail race. I had no experience and by in large felt like that I spent most of my time avoiding running in to the trees.

Interestingly, the women made a strong showing on this night. They took the first and 3rd spots overall. I am glad to see this, and I wish more of this happened. I feel like there are a lot of strong and fast women that hit the trails around Charlotte. Hopefully, this strong showing will inspire more of them to come out.

With the arrival of November, I have a few more races on my calendar before I close out ’18. Two will be on the roads, and I plan to close out the year with the WWC 5k in December. Closing out the year with a trial race just like I started the year only makes sense.

Happy Trails,

The Cool Down Runner

Saturday, October 27, 2018

New Trails @ the WWC

I have been meaning to write about the new trails at the WWC but I was holding off until I had a chance to run them. Recently, I got this chance.

They added 3 new trails: Bandit, Smokie, and Panda. These trails are located across the street from the WWC. Really, they are across the street from the WWC Academy School. Panda is a real nice trail It is much like the Lake Loop except that is only about a mile in length. Smokie is the next trail. It rolls a bit more and is about 3/4 of mile in length. Bandit is the longest and rolls but it easily runnable.

To access them, you take the Parkway Trail to the entrance, follow the sideway to the sign pointing you across the street. You will see the trail head. The trails are clearly marked.

From the illustration on the WWC trail map, they have plans to expand it even more. I hope they keep up this pace. I would love to some additional trails to hit where I could do one single long loop.

If you get a chance, check them out.

The Cool Down Runner