Since last October, this has been my place for long runs. Even after 20 miles, you see only a few of the same trails again. Being as I had been remiss in my running after the March marathon, my last long run out there had been in February.
I took Cole there this morning for our 14 miler. What a change of scenery from the dormant Winter doldrums to this lush green landscape. Where were the other runners? I'd always crossed paths with at least one other trail runner. Only fishermen today.
|Today's 14 mile run|
Our ever vigilant guardian angel had me put Cole back on the leash around mile 4. No more then 1/10 mile up the dirt road, a copperhead was sunning himself. He was watching us and I hesitated to squeeze past him. I found a long stick and flipped him around like a wet spaghetti noodle until he was off on the shoulder of the road.
Two years ago, I forked over $100 to enroll Cole in a snake proofing class. After repeated negative reinforcement, I was pleased to see him notice the instructor's snake and back off. Today, he never saw the snake. I was using one hand to keep him behind me and he was busy trying to take my stick away. Laurel and Hardy.
|A file picture of a copperhead, I will pack my camera next time.|
Later, Cole almost ran over a big black snake somewhat off side of the trail. I couldn't stop or go around, I was tethered to the oblivious nit wit. Best I could do is scream and jump. In a blur, I think it was a black rat snake, non venomous.
|File picture of a black rat snake.|
Even if I find more ticks on us, get poison ivy all around my ankles or don't get my MP3 player dried out after a thunderstorm caught us, it will be worth going back next weekend!
Sticking to my coach's advice, I ran more conservatively for the first 8 miles and then cranked it up as the miles progressed. I've never had any illusions of being a kind of sports car. Mack truck. That's what I am. So cool to visualize shifting gears to go faster. Yes, I do amuse myself! By the last few miles, I was running over a minute faster per mile than when I'd started and I was on target for the pace the coach had set. Having a tailored training program is far superior to fumbling around in the dark, hoping you're headed in the right direction.
Running ever so happily, Jamie