My training schedule, which is near nothing, took a very gradual upturn this past weekend. Mostly, it has consisted of walking the dogs at night and doing a trail race on the weekends. I did three races in January, but only have one on tap for February.
My bestie Chrissy Whitten asked if I could squeeze out time for a run Friday night, and I took her up on the idea. She needed 24 miles, and I was game but doubted I could keep up with her for much of that. She did a little of her scheduled 25 miles on the treadmill though and 15 was the final required amount for her to meet her training. For me--any run was training compared to what I have been doing.
I suggested LaFortune Park. It's a 3.25-mile loop, some asphalt, some chat. It's mostly except for the semi-scary places where it's not.
Its a big deal for Chrissy to find money on her runs. She views it as pennies from heaven--sort of a sign from God that He's thinking about her--and of course He is. I actually was the one who spotted the quarter and penny in the gravel and was part of God's plan to see them for her. I like that. I usually pick up pennies, thinking I only need to pick up a penny 100 million times to be a millionaire.
We did three laps for 9.7 miles by my watch. Even with our bathroom stops and picture taking, we averaged just a few seconds over 16-minute miles. That was something for me to build on. It's been so long since I've even given a flip about my pace, but that will need to change if I am gonna finish another 100-miler.
Saturday night, it was another dog walk. If both dogs would decide to--let's just say trot--trot, I could use them in my training. But it's not so much a run or walk for them as it is a sniff outing.
We usually go to Turkey Mountain and sometimes do the pavement, but we prefer the trailz. This night, for a change, I took them to the parking lot south of 96th/Riverside. They have never been there, and with the wide paved trailz, I thought I could keep them from being distracted from all the new smells in the grass, bushes, and around trees. Whatever. They stopped t sniff practically every blade of grass between Riverside Drive and Yale Ave.
A moon two days past full shone through the trees. Good thing because I forgot my headlamp. I forgot how dark the path can be since they've installed those eyesore concrete sound barrier walls.
I know I have run here at night before, but because I was mostly walking and dragging dogs from one sniff to the next, I was nice combinations of darkness, cracks of light, and the illumination glow from the turnpike lights.
We got 3.5 miles in with the return trip a bit faster. I am thinking if I can get Zeke and Roxie a little more focused on running, they can be my training buddies. Zeke needs the exercise, and they are both eager to go. We can help each other out.