A Really Good Run

Finally! A run I can be proud of. Conditions were perfect yesterday for a long run - 40 degrees, overcast, no wind. For all that, I still wasn't looking forward to my designated 17 miles. Mainly because I knew I'd be doing most of them alone. Poor lonely runner...

I showed up at the tennis courts, the popular starting point in Greensboro for most runners as it has a huge parking lot and leads directly to the Greenway. I ran a quick 3 miles before the formal Blueliner takeoff time of 7:30. Then I ran four miles out with the group. The majority of the group turns back at that point, but I was lucky enough to bump into a runner I'd seen before, but didn't really know. Dave overheard me say I was running 17 and he volunteered that he was going 18 and, like me, had already started the day off with an early 3 miles. Better yet, we ran an identical pace. WHAT A GIFT. The group turned back and Dave I carried on, running together for another hour and a half and chatting along the way. 

Time passes much faster for me when I'm with another runner, even if we're not talking. It's the steady beat of our feet hitting the pavement, listening to our rhythmic breathing, and knowing that even through I'm tired I can carry on a bit further, because the person running alongside me expects me to. 

During the first 4 miles of the group run, Thad, Lisa and me were talking about how, in general, most runners are really good people. If you want to get to know someone, run 15 miles with them. Hard exercise breaks down barriers and you get a quick sense if someone has a sense of humor, is driven, what motivates them, are they a whiner, are they generous... The joke is that around mile 10, everyone starts spilling their relationship and personal and work problems. You can't help it. It's something in the sweat...

So today's blog is a thank-you to Dave, for making Saturday's long run seem so very short indeed. And we pushed each other. Both of our training schedules called for a 9:20 pace but we completed our run with an average per mile pace of 8:50. Sweet.