“It’s getting to that point in the semester when my eye starts twitching,” my friend Lauren said to me. I felt it too. After a month of classes, cross country practice, and work, our routines for the semester have now become established. Sleep deprivation becomes the norm.
So, we decided to escape routine for a day and run the trails of Hashawha Environmental Center rather than the roads surrounding Westminster, which is what we usually do for cross country practice. In the years that I’ve spent exploring Hashawha, I’ve shared the trails and 380 acre facility with hikers, bikers, birders, picnicking families, dog walkers, fishermen, geocachers, and fellow runners. The best part is that it’s about 10 minutes from campus.
We decided to do a 45 minute run and decided to abandon the wider running trails that we usually favor to explore the upper bike paths that run deeper into the woods. Though we didn’t always know where we were going and I couldn’t pick up GPS signal on my phone, we were able to find a trail marker at least ever half mile or so. A few times we just stopped to admire how the leaves were beginning to change and how far away we felt from Westminster.
Though we weren’t quite sure where we were going while on the Lower Trail, we were too distracted by the wildlife we found and little streams we encountered to get nervous. Thankfully, we ended up finishing the run in perfect timing, and as we stretched I felt rejuvenated, energized, and ready to tackle the tasks waiting at school.
Whether it is through a sport, a club, or simply a walk through town, it’s great to take a break from the daily grind of work, school, and classes to explore the area around campus. Hitting the trails at Hashawha always calms me down and helps me to focus when I get back to campus