Friday, April 8, 2011

The Loop

Went for a run on my home loop last night. Because of its convenience, I have probably run this loop about a thousand times. It’s a 5 mile loop that is mostly on Greenway Trail and light traffic residential streets. It finishes with a mile long uphill stretch leading back to our house. Except for the first nice days of a new season, I rarely see anyone else out using the trail so it feels secluded. If I’m feeling like a little more distance, the loop passes the back entrance to the Nature Center Trail and I can get some steep hills and single track dirt trail, my favorite, but this night was just the standard 5 mile loop.

It’s amazing how your body adapts to exercise. Several years ago after my long layoff from exercise, a single mile of constant running was a difficult challenge that left me sore for days. I remember in Marine boot camp, the last run we did before graduating was the 5 mile motivation run. For several months we trained and looked forward to it. At that time it was the longest run I had ever attempted and when it finally came, it was a difficult and rewarding challenge to complete. The route took us places on the base we hadn’t seen before. We ran past the commanding officer’s house and other places that had remained hidden through all the training. These days, it hardly seems worth the time to put on my shoes and head out the door if I can’t get at least 5 miles in.

There are two construction zones that the loop intersects. I’m not sure when they actually do any construction as there are never any workers in the zones, at least until tonight. Nearly 4 miles into the run as I was approaching the final zone standing between me and the last big hill heading home, I heard the beeping sounds of commercial trucks backing. As I came around the corner I could see a crane boom swinging and yellow flashing lights on several different vehicles. Construction workers in their reflective vests and hardhats were working all over the place. Several of them turned to stare at me as I stopped and stood there for a second like a deer caught in headlights.

For a few moments I thought about just sprinting through them all. It would have been pretty funny to see their faces as I came storming through shirtless. Had it been dark already, I might have done just that. However, the sun was still up and there would be nowhere to escape if they had decided to give chase. I really doubt they would come after me, but I’m not sure what the charge and fine would even be and it didn’t seem worth the hassle or the time. Besides running through the pack of workers, my only choice was to head back the other direction. My 5 mile run had just turned closer to 8, I should have paced better. My only regret was that I hadn’t brought any water. I was ready for a drink by the time I got back to the house.

Week of March 28 – Bike 80, Run 23, D 10, U 4

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