Yesterday I got awake about 6 a.m., and decided to don my running kit and do some pavement pounding. This was my first run, after taking a few days rest. Running two 5ks the past two weekends plus doing some intense strength & core training led me to take some rest days from running.
I am still enjoying the 2 second place place medals (60-69) that I won in those races. They have given me the incentive that I needed to want to improve my time/distance. So, with the temperature being in the the mid 50’s with just a slight breeze, I left the house to just run. The only gear I took was my cell phone and my Garmin (aka Gary.) I had Gary set to go, and off I went. I had no pre-planned route, but I knew where I wanted to end up.
I decided my focus would be on form and distance. After a short warm-up walk, I headed towards downtown. My first challenge was one of two overhead bridges over the Norfolk Southern railroad track. I managed to run it, and even though it was a very slow run, I pushed myself, concentrating on my form (straight up, shoulders back, eyes forward.) I was glad to see the top and ready for the trip down. From that point I went and ran a block west to the 2nd bridge that took me back to the other side of the tracks. At that point, I felt a great sense of accomplishment.
From that point I headed west through some very old neighborhoods that I have never driven through, and now I’m running through them. It was early enough that I could run safely on the street (safer than the pavements). At about the 2-mile mark, I decided to turn back towards home. Things were going great with me…I wasn’t tired, my knees felt great (I was also testing out a knew knee brace), The endorphins were running high, so I plodded on. I incorporated some more slight elevation and headed towards the northeast end of town. I initially wanted to end the run by doing my normal cemetery run but it was not open yet for the day, so a quick re-route was planned. The best runs are those not planned.
At this point I looked down at Gary, and I saw that I was at the 4-mile point and I headed towards the neighborhood where my grandparents lived. Their old house still looks the same, and I thought about all the good memories associated with it. I headed back home with some slight detours–I was truly enjoying this run!
By the time I got back home, I clocked almost 5 miles at a 17:00 minute pace. I proved that I can run consistently, with minimal stopping for traffic lights, keep a good running form, and don’t need music, just the sounds of nature.
A few more runs like this and I’ll begin working on time improvement. It’s like learning to run all over again.
NOTE: I’m glad I did it yesterday because it is pouring down rain this morning.