Lessons in Being Cautious

Today is Wednesday Word link up day, hosted by Debbie over at Deb Runs. Each week Debbie provides a word prompt for us to write about. This week’s word is cautious. Click on the link up button below to see who else is joining in on this week’s link up.

Deb Runs

I started exploring trail running after my first marathon, in an effort to branch out from roads. As someone who manages to trip on smooth, flat surfaces, trail running has been pretty precarious for me. I have to be cautious as I go, in an attempt to stay upright. More often that not, I fall. But nine times out of ten only my ego is bruised.

That one other time out of ten can lead to a bit of blood, but at least I haven’t needed stitches yet! This past spring I delved more heavily into trail races and signed up for the Roanoke Non-Ultra Trail series, which went from January through the end of May. I ran five of the six races, and ran in all types of weather conditions. We had frigid, single digit temperatures, 18 inches of snow, ankle deep mud, and humidity. But you know what the constant was? Rooty, rocky trails bent on taking me down.


As the spring went on, I got stronger and learned how better to stay on my feet. Naturally, that all went out the window during Ragnar Trail Appalachians. But those trails were more than muddy, they were a disaster.


Overall, trail running has taught me how to be a more cautious, careful, and able runner.

What experiences in life have taught you how to be cautious? What has taught you to be more cautious? Running, in general, has taught me to be moreย aware of my surroundings.

P.S. Happy Birthday to my dear husband, Barry!! He doesn’t like a lot of fanfare, so I don’t get to do a whole post for him. This is the most he will allow on social media ๐Ÿ™‚


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  1. Happy Birthday Barry!


  2. I’ve tried trail races a few times and have fallen a number of times as well. I don’t think I am very carefree when it comes to running and trail running makes me too nervous

    1. It can be very nerve-racking! You really have to focus on your feet (and miss all of the great views!) the whole way.

  3. As I get older, I see a lot of my friends becoming more cautious. Is it life experience? Or just a “getting older thing”? I haven’t done that yet–I’m still pushing my limits.
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted…CautiousMy Profile

    1. I think it’s that as we grow older we get more of a sense of danger than we had when we were little. That, and we don’t bounce the way we used to!

  4. I’m another person that trail running makes me nervous. Although the only time I’ve ever fallen running was on a paved surface! But then again I rarely run on trails.

    I think some of the problem is that as you get older, it’s not so easy to bounce back from injury.
    Judy @ Chocolaterunsjudy recently posted…Do injuries make you a cautious runner?My Profile

    1. I trip a lot on trails, but I probably fall as often on trails as I do on a smooth surface. You’re right! As you get older, it takes longer to heal, and you just don’t bounce like you used to.

  5. I am pretty klutzy on my feet, so trail running isn’t exactly my thing. Technical trails, I guess. I’m ok with hard packed, nicely groomed trails. But I’ll never forget the first time I tried to run in the dark one early AM without a headlamp. I managed to find the only rock in the road and twist my ankle on it! Luckily, it wasn’t serious and I was able to shake it off. But now I always use a headlamp when it’s dark outside!
    Alison recently posted…Wednesday Words – CautiousMy Profile

    1. Oh that is so what I would do, too. I definitely need a headlamp if it is dark outside!

  6. Totally unrelated….but can I just say I simply adore that your Dad leaves you comments on your blog! My mom supposedly reads my blog but I can’t for the life of me get her to comment ๐Ÿ™ So kudos to you Dad! I enjoy running on trails, not so much in the mud but you do have to pay way more attention to where your feet are going and I think it’s a greater workout. Your using more muscles to stabilize you on ground that is not level like a road! You do great in your road runs and I think the trail runs help a lot!
    Tricia@MissSippipiddlin recently posted…Being Cautious While Running SoloMy Profile

    1. I love that too!!
      jan recently posted…Worst Time?My Profile

    2. Thanks! ๐Ÿ™‚ I always enjoy seeing what he has to say.

      I agree with you – trails definitely makes you stronger and more versatile. Unfortunately for me, I lost what little speed I had when I put more focus on trails. But I do enjoy them!

  7. I’ve done a few trail races and you definitely have to be more cautious. One of them was not a good experience as I ended up turning my ankle over multiple times in high grass. You couldn’t see where you were stepping. I would be very cautious about returning to that trail.
    HoHo Runs recently posted…Proceed with CautionMy Profile

    1. Uh oh, that’s no good! You definitely do have to be more cautious, and even then it’s very easy to turn an ankle.

  8. Trail running definitely takes caution – and concentration!
    Coco recently posted…Throwing Caution To The WindMy Profile

    1. Very true! Sometimes I feel like the time goes by faster on trails, because you’re so focused on not falling.

  9. Happy birthday to Barry! I tend to be a tad bit klutzy in life, even outside of my workouts, so I’ve learned when I need to take things slower in order to be cautious. For example, one time recently while taking dozens of bags of groceries into the kitchen at once, I dropped a can of soup directly onto my toe. Ouch!
    Lisa @ Lisa the Vegetarian recently posted…Disney World Trip Planning Tips โ€“ Part 1My Profile

    1. Oh no! That would really hurt. I hate when things like that happen.

  10. Oh, I love your approach to this week’s word! And yes, trail running makes me much more cautious!

    Thanks for linking up!
    Debbie @ Deb Runs recently posted…When Did I Become So Cautious?My Profile

    1. I haven’t gotten a chance to read your take on the word yet, but based on the title of post I’m guessing you became cautious when you started trail running ๐Ÿ˜‰

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