Friday, August 13, 2010

Running shenanigans

This is a shock to me, I actually have been keeping a semi-regular running schedule.  I haven't been writing about it each day because I'm afraid if I do, I'm going to jinx it.  I've also been using the P90X videos for strength training.  I can't say I'm up to a whole video at a time yet, but I'm out of shape enough that even half a Tony Horton video is still kicking my butt.  I'm telling myself that some P90 is better than no P90 and since I am not one for getting creative with the resistance training (read: I have no idea what I am doing with weights) it helps me to feel like I have a little focus.

Last night I had a short 3 mile run and I took the creek trail that I take all the time.  I know if I go along the greenbelt from my house to this certain trashcan on the other side of the main road, I've made it a mile and a half and I can turn back.  After last night, though, I am going to have to change my route.  I'm bummed.  I like running along the path so much better than running along the road--I feel so much more peaceful when there are trees and bunnies with me.  But last night I stumbled upon something I wish I hadn't.

I'd made it across the road and down the path along the creek--I only had about .3 miles before I turned back and headed home.  I found my trashcan (which was quite ripe in the heat last night) and headed toward the road.  The last time I ran through there, someone had taken all the dog poo bags out of the container on the post and strewn them all over the path.  I cleaned them up and put them back since it pisses me off when somebody has to ruin a nice place for everyone.  So anyway, when I doubled back and saw a shopping cart on the path, I kind of groaned.  This is about a half mile from the nearest grocery store and I am being haunted by abandoned grocery carts this summer.  Unfortunately, I wasn't feeling up to walking it back to the store.  So that's what I was thinking about as I came up on it and saw a Costco-sized bottle of cheap whiskey in the cart.  On the ground next to it was a black trash bag full of something lumpy, like blankets.

I kid you not that all I was thinking about the bag was please don't let there be a body in there.  I was afraid someone dumped an animal, so I stopped for a sec next to the cart and listened.  Nothing.  Phew.  I considered dumping the whiskey in the trash so little kids wouldn't find it, but then I realized that whoever would leave a bottle sitting there like that probably had a reason for doing so and I didn't want to get in the middle of anything.  I made my way up to the road and decided to run back home along the street, in case there were any shady characters around.

Just as I crossed the creek bridge, I heard two (teenage?) male voices in the brush along the path.  I looked over just in time to see a flash of bodies move in the brush and a BARE @SS.  There it was, westward facing, shining in the setting sun.  I will leave to your imagination the details of what I think was going on between those two, but suffice it to say I BOOKED it out of there.  I was sure whatever it was, I didn't want to be interrupting it.

Don't worry, E gave me a talking-to about where I run, and though it breaks my heart I'm going to stay on the main roads rather than the path from now on.  I'm just so bummed.  I hate that people ruin something for everyone, but I need to be safe.  I gave some serious thought on the way home to attending the local running store's Saturday morning runs in hope of finding a running buddy.  Since I want to switch back to morning runs when school starts, it would probably be a good idea to find someone who would run with me.  But oh, the anxiety about meeting new people and running with another person... I'll let you know if I overcome that or not.

In other running news, I've been trying hard to improve my speed.  I read an article a while ago about stride and posture, and I'm trying to incorporate the suggestions of the article--things like increasing my turnover and keeping my posture in a way that helps to propel me forward.  It's definitely making a difference (one mile I ran last night was 9:50--probably my fastest since I've been running--no laughing) but I can tell my lungs aren't quite ready to keep that kind of pace going.  I figure the more I work on it, I will build stamina.  Right?


2 comments:

  1. Ugh i'm sorry. I know the feeling. I'm from Elk Grove so I think I know the local running area you're talking about...if you do it let me know! I have thought about heading down there as well...just haven't done it for the same reason you have. New people and awkward running..not exactly my thing!

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  2. It's always so sad when people ruin a good area for everyone!
    I definitely hope you find somewhere better to run that's safe!!

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