Sunday, December 20, 2009

Running with the ERTR

That's Elite Runners Trail Runners!!!

Some of the local trail runners decided to put together a trail running "team" to promote trail running in and around the Pittsburgh Area. My favorite running store, Elite Runners and Walkers, and my favorite running shoes, Brooks, are sponsoring the team. I attended an informational meeting yesterday and decided to become a "Full Time Racer!"

There are 3 different levels of membership you can belong to: Full Time Racer, Part Time Racer, and Part Time Racer without the Brooks deals. Each level has it's own membership dues and has different benefits and requirements. My level cost $25 and comes with discounts on Brooks merchandise, 10% off everything in the store throughout the year, and a few other perks. I need to volunteer at a couple races and wear Brooks shoes and ERTR shirts to major trail races.

I'm really excited about this group! As a budding trail runner who lost his best friend and training partner to a career relocation (which was SO GOOD for her!!!) I'm looking for as many experienced folks to run with as possible. And to have a group dedicated to running trails and helping each other out is just fantastic!

Today was our first group run. We met at 10 am and planned on running at least a 4 mile trail loop. As you can see from this picture, it snowed here this weekend.

We headed off along the side of a golf course to catch the trail through about 4-5 inches of fresh snow. This was my first time to run in snow like this and it added a little bit of a challenge. Each step brought a small "slip" backwards, and by the end of the run, I could really feel my quads!

Carl brought Bella, his Australian Shepherd. I had some dog treats in my Jeep and Bella and I became close friends right away. Here they are running through the snow!

Here's a shot of today's group. Wayne (on the left in the gray) just finished a deca Iron Man and was pour guide today. If you don't know, a deca Iron Man is 10 straight days of Iron Man competitions--WOW!

It was a great run and I managed to keep up with the group. It was nice to meet new friends and learn about trail running. I love to listen to peoples stories of races, training runs, and pacing.

I'm really going to enjoy being a member of the ERTR!

Stay safe, keep your soles to the ground, and keep moving forward!

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