Saturday, August 11, 2007

0 Run 3, Week 3 (CT5K): A Run in the Sun


Tonight's run went really well. I went running around 5:15 pm today & it was beautiful outside. Sunny but not too hot, with a nice breeze & just the right amount of shade. I took the path of my usual 5-mile route that I used to do when I trained for high school track & local area road races, but instead of running the whole thing I started out walking the route for about 20 minutes & then began my CT5K workout. After the workout, I walked back home. The CT5K workout was probably about 2 miles & all of the walking done before & after the CT5K workout probably totaled around 3 miles. The nice thing about having a long post-workout walk is that it definitely stretches you out & helps alleviate any post-running soreness you might otherwise have the next day.

I had a lot of energy today, with continual surges that came in waves & powered me throughout my entire run. Only a few hours earlier, I'd taken a B12 vitamin & an iron supplement & had eaten a late lunch consisting of a piece of cheese & some left-over celery soup. (See my blog Cook. Eat. Drink. Blog. for the celery soup recipe). The vitamin supplements probably had the most to do with my elevated energy level.

I love running through the downtown area of my parents' town. It's wonderfully scenic & very calming. The only drawback is that sometimes the sidewalk pavement can be a tad bit uneven in certain areas, so you have to be rather vigilant about your running form, even when you're at your most fatigued. Otherwise, you might go flying into the air rather unexpectedly. ;-)

The residential areas (especially around the golf course & the country roads) are also a great place to run around here, but you do need to constantly be on the lookout for passing cars. Cars can go flying by & often come dangerously close to you when you're running/walking on the road. There isn't any dedicated path or trail that runs parallel to the road, or for that matter, even really much of a roadside area for runners & bikers. This means it can be a challenge every time cars approach & you're forced to run in the uneven roadside areas, which are often hilly & full of dirt/gravel or grass; their elevation also can increase suddenly/sharply. This can take some getting used to, but it's still generally a very pleasant place to run.

I love running outdoors, especially on a beautiful sunny day. I find it quite a contrast to running on a track, which I abhor & find painfully boring but will still do out of pure practicality when the circumstances merit it. I think the repetitiveness of the track makes runs feel longer & much more tiresome. I find I'm always thinking "when is this run going to be over" when I'm on the track. In contrast, I rarely ask that question when I'm running on the open road. I usually can't wait to run when I know there's something interesting or beautiful to see/experience. On the open road, I love that feeling that you're moving forward & are going somewhere, versus the track, where I feel like a hamster on a wheel, going in endless circles. When I run on the road, I still do end up making a large circuit (I start at the house & end at the house, or start at a certain point downtown or on campus & end up in the same spot). However, since I am completing one big circle versus making several little ones (in which the scenery doesn't change & isn't very stimulating), road-running is hardly ever tedious in the same way that a track can be. I'll take the open road over a treadmill or a track any day.

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