A Simple Running Log

November 5, 2012

Training for 11/5/12

Filed under: Uncategorized — aschmid3 @ 5:06 pm

I had a pretty sweet weekend.

Friday night, Clark and I went to the Washington Street Pub in Easton with our friend Mike, and we also met there my cousin Corey and Mia, an intern who’s been working in Clark’s office since the spring but is moving back to Florida this week to finish up her master’s degree next semester. She’s from Thailand, and it’s been fun listening to her take on all the weirdos in Clark’s office, haha.

Mia and Clark.

Corey, me, Clark and Mike. For some reason the flash didn’t work here so we’re seen in a red filter courtesy of the neon sign above the raw bar.

Also, Corey said he got that sweet watch cap from his second job, working on the docks at night, haha.

We got home around 1 a.m., which, for old people like ourselves, is pretty late. Saturday morning, I stayed in bed as long as possible before I thought Pepper was going to claw off my face and drag me to the kitchen to feed him.

I made myself get dressed instead of getting back in bed, and I went out and ran a quick, easy lap around my 5.5-mile loop. When I got home, I ate some breakfast and made another batch of pumpkin muffins. Kara got to my house around 10:30 a.m., and we drove to Trap Pond State Park.

Saturday wasn’t the most gorgeous day, overcast and definitely on the chilly side, but it was still a great day for a trail run. It was Kara’s first time running trails.

I decided to run my usual route backwards, so we’d run the best part last. Naturally, I got us completely lost, haha. I knew it was taking us longer to get to a road crossing than it should have, but I didn’t say anything until we pretty much wound up back where we’d started. So we turned around and veered left where we’d run straight the first time, and found the road. I figured we’d tacked on about a mile to the run with that detour.

When we got across the road, we were on a trail that’s mostly intended for horses. It’s a narrow trail that’s hard to pick out on a normal day, but with all the debris blown down by the storm last week, it was even harder to see.

Since we were running the trail backwards, I saw something I’d never noticed before — a tiny graveyard in the middle of the woods. Of course we had to check it out. There were only about eight markers, some of which were so small they only had initials on them. Others were so worn we couldn’t read what they once said. The newest marker we found was from 1904. The rest that had legible dates were from the 1880s.

Not long after that, I got us a little off-course because a downed tree made it hard to see the trail. Once we’d gotten back on the trail, we came to a stream crossing where I’ve never even seen so much as a trickle before. We both got our feet nice and soaked crossing that.

It wasn’t too long after that I was running along when I heard the unmistakable thud of a body hitting the dirt behind me. Yup, that was Kara, taking her first fall, haha. I told her she was officially a trail runner now. She dusted herself off and kept running.

On that same section of trail, we saw three white-tailed deer bounding away.

We re-emerged from that section of the trail on the same road we’d crossed earlier, ran over a small bridge and then got back on the trail. This section was made more for walkers and cyclists, as it was nice and wide and covered in a fine gravel that made it very easy to see.

The last few miles weren’t nearly as eventful as the first. I didn’t get us lost, no one fell and we got to run over a really pretty bridge over the stream crossing, instead of traipsing through it.

Before I knew it, we were back in the parking lot, six miles of trail behind us. Kara said she really enjoyed it, and I had a lot of fun running it with someone else.

We drove to Fruitland for sushi, which really hit the spot. Once we got back to my house, Kara went home, and I took a nice, hot shower. My feet were still freezing from when they’d gotten soaked.

Saturday night was pretty quiet. Clark and I stayed in and just had pizza for dinner.

Sunday morning, we had to get up early, but it wasn’t so bad, since the clocks had fallen back an hour that night. Clark, Pepper and I left around 6 a.m. to get Clark to the airport in time for his flight to San Antonio, and then Pepper and I got back home around 9 a.m.

I’d eaten one of my pumpkin muffins before we left the house (and drank a pumpkin coffee in the car on the way to the airport) but I was hungry again when I got home. I still had a ton of pumpkin puree left from the muffins, as I’d gotten the 29-oz. can instead of the 15-oz. can, so I looked up a recipe for pumpkin pancakes.

I made myself a huge stack of pumpkin pancakes and scrambled some eggs, and had a nice little brunch.

Around 11:30 a.m., I changed into some running clothes, clipped on Pepper’s leash and headed out to do a lap around my 8.2-mile loop.

It was a pretty day for a run, nice and sunny and not too cold. I made Pepper leave in the yard that giant branch he’d brought home from our last run, thinking he’d probably drop it along the way and be upset when he got back home and realized it was gone.

Not 100 yards down the road, he found a substitute. It wasn’t a branch, but a piece of a board that had been washed onto the shoulder from the field in last week’s storm. So he ran the whole loop with a board in his mouth.

We ran into a lot of people — and other dogs — in the first half of the run. The first dog came after us about a mile and a half into the run. We were running past a farmhouse, and this tiny white dog with a tiny pink retractable leash dragging behind her came bounding after us. Chasing her was this little kid yelling, “Sandy, sit! Sit!” I stopped running so someone could get a hold of her and get her out of the road. A man came out of the house and got the dog, and we went on our way.

Churchgoers were leaving the church down at the ferry, and there were several state workers swarming all over the ferry, so that place was a relative madhouse. No one bothered us, but Pepper was pretty anxious to get away from all that activity.

I thought we were clear after that, but when we came up out of the swamp, we met a guy on an ATV who had a beagle running along with him. The beagle bolted for Pepper, who, of course, freaked out. I was trying to get a handle on Pepper’s collar to calm him down when the beagle ran right between my feet. I very nearly tripped on the damn thing, but caught myself on Pepper, haha. The guy on the ATV ran over and got a hold of the beagle.

The rest of the run was pretty peaceful. When we got home, Pepper added the board to his new collection of “sticks,” and I had to take some pictures of him.

Pepper gnawing on the board he carried for eight miles yesterday.

Chewing on the branch he found Friday, with the board nearby.

Pepper proudly standing over his favorite “stick.”

I spent the rest of Sunday using up more of the pumpkin puree to make a pumpkin chocolate smoothie that wasn’t too bad, watching the NASCAR race (don’t want to talk about it) and football and then falling asleep on the couch.

This morning, I started the final week of training for the 50K. Pepper and I did a rather chilly lap around the 4.5-mile loop first, and when I got home, I went upstairs and did my ab exercises, push-ups, invisible chair-sitting and weight lifting, and then I did my barefoot exercises and stretching downstairs.

The rest of the week is very low-activity — three miles tomorrow, two Wednesday and none the rest of the week before the race Saturday morning.

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