a) A recent sighting on an “in-city” trail run
b) Bear scat
c) How you feel after a hard workout
d) All of the above
This photo was taken on the easy 6 mile loop on the hill behind Issaquah High School on June 13th. It’s a good reminder to always remain alert when you are out on a run as you never know what else is out on those trails. And yes, this is what bear scat can look like in the Puget Sound Area. The small cone is in there for reference and is approximately just over 2” long (slightly longer than your thumb). What do you do if you spot a bear? Act and sound large by talking to the bear and putting your arms up above your head. Do not make eye contact and do not run.
Is this how you are feeling after a run? A workout should leave you feeling like you have worked hard but are still ready to continue your workout schedule. This time of year with spectacular weather, many races and multiple commitments is challenging for athletes with goal races on the horizon. Often your workout will have “easy” attached to it. Are you actually running or biking easy? Most recreational athletes tend to run/bike/swim at a moderate pace for the majority of their workouts. That moderate pace is a danger zone which does not allow you to recover and can limit your ability to hit appropriate paces on key workouts. If your goal race is coming up, your focus should be on that race. Your workouts and “fun” races should be just that. Fun and easy and helping you build towards your goal race.
If you need clarification of what an “easy” pace is, ask! Some good signs are that you can still maintain a conversation during an entire run. If you are running alone, you should be able to speak in sentences. You are better off erring on the side of caution and slowing your pace down. Remember, your goal race is coming!