Workout: ~4.25-mile run
I gave myself two options this morning: run 2-2.5 miles and come home to some weights or run 3 miles and come home to a breakfast of eggs and grits. Either way, no matter how lazy or tired I felt, I would be running.
I wasn't sure which option I'd pick when I set off. I headed down the street, knowing that I could (in a mile or so) cut off through the park for a shorter route or I could detour and pick up the Greenway for a bit and make it 3+. I lumbered a bit for the first section or so, my legs heavy and taking a bit to get the feel of things. Denali and I had to stop for a crosswalk and continued along our way, taking advantage of the gentle downhill toward the park. I started to feel better and the debate as to which route to take was raging in my head. Short or long? Left or straight?
And then, just about a block, where I'd really have to decide, I remembered that I didn't have to take either route. I could go right. I could go right and pick up the Greenway, running one of my favorite stretches of trail in the city.
Many a training run were along that path, affording me the opportunity to run uninterrupted for miles and miles. The river runs to the right and throngs of trees line the bank. In the summer, they provide lush cover and the illusion of seclusion as you plod along. In the fall, the trail turns brilliant with oranges and reds and leaves crunch beneath your feet. The barren trees of winter offer windows to the water and there's a cool silence as you move.
I hadn't seen much of that section this winter, maybe not all. So as I made my turn, I grew more and more excited with each step. I was home.
I made sure that that my giddiness didn't translate to a faster pace - in fact, I made sure to "chat" with Denali at regular intervals to make sure the pace was "conversational. No need to go crazy. But as I ran, I noticed that I was beginning to feel different. Better. My legs felt lighter and looser, my breath easier. I didn't feel the need to break for a minute, and I actually ran the last half with no rest. I was unsure of whether it was the weather (a balmy 30 degrees) or whether baby boy decided to take a rest somewhere new but I wasn't going to question it. I was going to go.
The trail, though, had other plans. Of course. A section was flooded, and I was forced to run for home.
When we Denali and I reached the doorstep, I was unaware of how far I'd gone or how long it took but it didn't matter. I felt great. I felt like, for a brief period today, I had reunited with myself.