Information about a local rail trail

LOCATION: 2459 River Road, Washington Boro, PA 17582

Click below for driving directions.


I recently ran on the Enola Low Grade Trail and was reminded of how fortunate we are to have such beautiful places to run. The south central Pennsylvania area is filled incredible running opportunities.


I began at the Turkey Hill trailhead in Manor Township and ran to Safe Harbor. The crushed stone trail is a little over 5.2 miles long one-way, Eventually the trail will be a continuous 29 miles. There are plenty of things to see along the way though so it does not get boring.


PROS: Like all rail trails, this has a crushed stone surface and is mostly flat. Even though it is only a tad over 5 miles, I actually enjoy doing long runs here. I usually return to my car for fuel and hydration, so this is convenient. Here is my most recent long run on the Enola: https://www.strava.com/activities/2367032498 I also appreciate mile markers (every half mile!) and port-a-potties along the trail. In addition to waterfalls, you can spy windmills, turkey vultures, bald eagles, and even a caboose!

Some of the fun sights along the trail.
One of the many waterfalls.
The end of the trail, at least for now.

Mile markers every half mile make it ideal for interval training.

CONS: This portion of the trail lacks shade so it can get quite warm in the summer. There aren’t any water fountains, so be prepared. Oh, and you COULD get hit by a rock slide, but what are the chances?

Race Recovery

What to do after a race…. recovery!

You put in the hard work and you had a great race, maybe even set a Personal Record! Now what? Race recovery!

Congratulations to the athletes I coach who raced this weekend. For some this was their goal race and they trained for 8-16 weeks in order to run a PR. For others it was a hard effort that is part of their training. Regardless of the situation proper race recovery is essential.

You had a great finish, they placed the medal around your neck, and now you just want to sit down… DON’T!

Immediately after finishing, try and replenish fluids. I suggest chocolate milk because of the carbohydrates and proteins, but sports drinks with electrolytes are also beneficial. Continue to walk around if you can. If your clothes are wet, change them and get comfortable.

Most of us do not feel like running a cool down, stretching, and foam rolling after a race, myself included! One of my favorite recovery tricks is the yoga pose, Legs Up On Wall. If you can do this pose within 30 minutes of finishing, it can speed up recovery by improving circulation. It’s a simple exercxie to do: Lie down on your back and try to get your butt as close to the wall as possible, extending your legs up, perpendicular to the floor. I can share with you my butt does not get very close to the wall but I still benefit from this. Open your arms to the sides, palms up. Focus on relaxing and breathing deeply.

In the hours following a race be sure to refuel with a full meal. After racing a longer race, I tend to listen to my cravings. Sometimes I want a salty soup, and sometimes I want a burger and fries (but tacos are ALWAYS a favorite)! I DO make sure I eat protein to help rebuild muscles and I increase fluid intake. Take some time to stretch, self massage, foam roll, and take en epsom salt bath. You do not have to incorporate all these methods, but I do suggest one or two.


The week after a race you need to listen to your body and adapt. If this was your goal race, you need some time to recover. This is where having a coach can be an asset. You want to focus on recovery but you do not want to lose fitness. Depending on age, running history, and injury tendency, I recommend one to three days of total rest, then easing back into some activity. Active recovery can reap huge benefits – easy biking, walking, swimming or Yoga! My favorite yoga resources is Yoga with Adrienne.

Don’t be afraid to go for a short jog a few days after your marathon. I know you will be sore and tired but I find an easy jog can help speed along race recovery. You do NOT want to take an extended period off unless you have an injury. I also highly recommend getting a professional massage. Other beneficial things you can do are foam rolling, self massage with Arnica gel or Tiger Balm, and some gentle stretching.

After a longer hard effort, our immune systems get tired as well. Make a point of getting some high quality sleep. I highly suggest to the athletes I coach to take extra vitamin C during the taper period and for at least a week post race. You don’t want to have an unplanned rest period due to being sick.

Since you won’t be running much this week, use the extra time to focus on race recovery. I have another blog post that discusses active and passive recovery that can be found here: https://run717.com/2019/02/18/recovery-8-weeks-until-boston/

Contact me with your recovery questions or if you are interested in being coached.

Remember Stress + Rest = GROWTH!!!

Post Marathon Depression

It can happen whether you run a PR (personal record) or a PW (personal worst). Post marathon blues are real and it is more common than you think. Know that you are not alone.

In 2019 I had a decent race at Boston running 3:00:26 and placing 4th in my age group. It was somewhere between my PR of 2:53 and my PW (personal worst!). I am experienced enough to know that being objective and finding success in the experience is important: I qualified for Boston, I got to the start healthy, I finished strong, 3:00:26 is a great time for a 47 year old female, placing 4th in age group is amazing, and although I was sore immediately after, I didn’t have any injuries. I celebrated ALL of this. I KNEW those things but I also knew that my 2019 Boston time didn’t reflect my fitness.

And although I had a decent race that I celebrated, I could feel IT already. I was a bit moody, teary, and unsettled. I ran 1,110 miles in preparation for that Boston (beginning 1/1/19). I had a couple of 100+ mile weeks, and numerous weeks I ran doubles. I gave up fun races and activities. I tried to dial in nutrition and focus on recovery. Every day I had a goal and purpose. Structure. Focus. Motivation. Now what?

After focusing on training for months, I felt blah. I just wanted to sleep and I didn’t feel like doing much of anything. Although it may not be a clinical diagnosis, there are physiological and psychological reasons for post marathon depression.

How can we combat PMD? Here are some suggestions:

  • Write it down (or talk about it). Let it out through journaling or talking to a caring friend.
  • Perspective. Keep the race in perspective. If it didn’t go the way you wanted, think of it as a training run for your next race.
  • Give Back. Volunteer at a race or help out at one of the many great running programs like Girls on the Run.
  • Get Outside. This one helps me a great deal. I am used to running outside and nothing can boost your mood better than fresh air and sunshine. If you are too sore to run, go for walk or hike.
  • Future Goals. It can help to plan out your future racing schedule. Find your next race and commit to it by registering or making plans with a friend.
  • Cross Train. After long, heavy training cycles, running legs can benefit from some cross training. Try a new sport or revisit an activity you had been ignoring because of your running.
  • Go For a Run. We all need rest days and recovery periods, but short easy runs of 30 minutes can boost your mood and help you maintain the fitness you worked so hard to build.

Remember, PMD is real and more common than you think, but it will pass. Pamper yourself for a few days, but do not dwell. If you want to build on your fitness, have a plan and do not let weeks go by without running. I plan on getting outside later and playing soccer with my son, but right now, I think I will go nap!

Recovery – 8 Weeks Until Boston

There are eight weeks until the Boston Marathon and we are in the heart of training. Weekly mileage is increasing, long runs are growing, and cumulative fatigue is making speed work even more challenging. All the hard work is stress on your body. The better your recovery, the harder you can train. If you haven’t started a recovery routine, it isn’t too late! Here is an introduction to recovery during marathon training (I plan to write about each technique with greater detail in the near future).

There are two kinds of recovery: active and passive. Active recovery means being active in a way that promotes recovery; it takes effort and/or planning on your part. Passive recovery means stillness and inactivity. Both types of recovery have a place in training.

Active recovery can take on many forms. An active recovery run can provide an opportunity to actively engage the soft tissue — muscles, tendons and ligaments — by promoting blood flow without the catabolic effect of over-stressing muscle fibers. Cross training, such as swimming or cycling, can also provide some of the same benefits. Yoga, stretching, foam rolling, and self massage are other examples of active recovery. There are many running specific tools – such as the bar I am using in picture on the right.

The most obvious example of passive recovery is a rest day– this means no running, cross training, or lifting. Sleep is another example of passive recovery and is often under estimated. During my highest weeks of mileage, I even sneak in naps on days I run twice or the afternoon following a long run. Getting a professional massage can reap huge benefits. One of my favorite passive recovery tools is an epsom salt bath. After a hard work out or long run I often do not feel like doing anything EXCEPT soaking in the tub!

Nutrition is also an important factor in recovery. Hydrating immediately after a run is important, even in cold temperatures. Water is often adequate, but depending upon temperature and effort, you may want to include some electrolytes as well. After long runs and hard efforts I make smoothies with protein powder. Incorporating certain foods such as fish oil, vitamin C, ginger and turmeric into your diet can help decrease inflammation.

I have to admit, I am lazy. I do NOT do everything I should do, especially when it comes to recovery but I have improved especially as I have increased my weekly mileage. You do NOT have to be perfect. Try to incorporate some sort of recovery into your training – something is better than nothing!