Thursday, April 7, 2011

Darkness on the Edge of Town

Gene Meade  In my endless search to keep training runs new and interesting, I tested a new approach Wednesday morning. As my night shift brothers and sisters can attest, it is sometimes difficult to squeeze in a workout due to our schedules. I have taken to keeping my gym bag in the car, with a full compliment of running gear. My work takes me to different towns throughout NC, and I am always scoping out spots to run.
My crew finished up Tues night/Wed morning around 4 am. On my way to the job, I noticed  nice stretch of road, well lit with sidewalks running all the way along the road. It had several nice inclines along the way as well.
I sent the crew on their way, and changed into my running gear. Starting out in the parking lot of the local at Trader Joes, I set off into the early morning darkness. It was a little chilly, and I initially cursed  myself for not wearing my gloves, but after the first mile or so, the hands warmed up. The condition of the sidewalk was even better than I expected, with no uneven spots, so the chances of an epic pre-dawn face plant were minimal.
I planned to run 5 miles, going out 2.5, then turning back around. The streets were empty, and the only sign of life was a possum that wandered across the sidewalk up ahead of me. I hit the turnaround at 2.5, feeling good. A couple of nice inclines on the way back, and before I knew it, I was back at the parking lot, my five miles completed. It was a little before 5am, and traffic was still light, so the ride home was easy. I had to teach spin class later that morning at 9:30am, so I even had time to get a quick nap in before class too!
So, the new "commando" training run technique was successful. I hope to make it a regular feature in my training week!

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