I did not run for the last two days, so I knew I must run today. The Boilermaker 15K is a month and two days away and I do not feel ready. I feel old and creaky. So I went on a long, challenging run and now I feel — you guessed it — even older and more creaky. I suppose one will have that when one is, in fact, old and creaky. However, I planned earlier to make a Running Commentary post, so here it is.
The Mohawk Valley weather gifted us with a beautiful, sunny day today. It is a day which calls us to spend time outdoors (I say is, because the sun is beckoning me onto the deck as I type this) (in fact, what am I thinking, being in here? My laptop has batteries! I’m going to finish this post outside) (That took a few minutes. Now where was I?). I got home and got right into running clothes and out the door as soon as possible.
I knew it would be a good idea to run a hill or two, but all the hills are on the other side of German Street. Would traffic allow me to cross the street? I ran toward German and hoped. Wow, lots of cars. And my body was NOT in the mood to run. Oh, my legs were tired, it was not easy to breathe, my back was sore, I was incapable of moving very fast. However, I WAS capable of moving. Maybe no hills today. After all, if I couldn’t cross the street… but maybe now… no, cars kept coming. Well, if I couldn’t cross the street, I couldn’t feel guilty for not running hills, could I? Oh, here was an opportunity. Damn. Uh, I mean, good!
But which hill to run? That sun was certainly warm. I decided to run into Brookfield Park and down the path in the woods, which comes out on the back road up to Herkimer College (HCCC, to long-time locals). The road goes up as soon as you go into the park. Oh, that was painful. It’s not even that long or steep of a hill. Good God, I only took two days off! What the hell, body? It seemed to take a long time to get into the park, but soon I came to the bridge over the brook, which leads to the picnic area beyond which is the path through the woods. I decided to go beyond it, to the end of the road, then back to it.
The stream babbled towards me, over rocks, moving rapidly and splashing busily. The recent rains were no doubt having their effect, but it did not look in any danger of flooding. At the end of the road is a fenced off area. I could see a path at the edge of the fence, where apparently pedestrians bypass the fence and walk into the woods. I, however, did not do so. I had had the damnedest time getting this far; all I could think was that if I could go no further, I did not want to be too far from civilization.
Soon I was headed into the woods, along the path, which also took a long time. I was not going to go the rest of the way up to the college. I would keep running. Then I would stop. Ooh, stopping sounded good. But I kept going. Finally I got back onto the road and headed down. Then I had another idea. There were a couple of dead end roads that went uphill. I could run up those and still get some hills in. I turned right onto the first one.
And realized that it was not exactly a dead end. It led up to the college by the dormitories, a way I have dubbed the kick-butt way. Well, I did not have to run up the college the kick-butt way, just because I accidentally went on that road. I could turn around. I WOULD turn around.
I did not turn around. Instead, I got my butt kicked. It is a good idea to get your butt kicked a month and two days before the Boilermaker 15K, I think. When I ran down the hill from the college, I stopped at the spring and got a drink. As I ran onto my street, I passed two ladies and a baby on a front porch. The baby was crying piteously.
“That’s exactly how I feel right now,” I said. One of the ladies laughed.
I tell you, it was a lousy run, but I ran and I’m glad I did. Tomorrow I am scheduled to donate blood at a blood drive at my work, so I will probably not run or walk. And the Boilermaker 15K will be a month and one day away. Yikes!