This week we have a Commuter Challenge going on at work. Try to reduce the amount that you drive to work during the week and see how your company stacks up for participation against others. I also happened to have a 20K (12.4 mi) run on my schedule on Wednesday. And my home just happens to be about that far from downtown Calgary. What better way to get a long run in than to run from work to home?
When I first moved here I used to drive to the train station and ride the train into work. About a year ago I landed a parking spot downtown so I’ve been driving in ever since. I’ve never actually navigated the bus system. So I poured over the Calgary Transit website figuring out what bus I would need and what time I would have to catch it at. Riding the bus was quick and easy, but where I dropped the ball was on the logistics slightly. As I walked towards the bus stop with my running gear and my purse in my hand I realized that I hadn’t really thought about my purse! I was carrying all this stuff to work that I’d need tonight…tomorrow…but I certainly wasn’t running home carrying my purse. Oops! Luckily I was able to pass a few key items off to Debbie (like my glasses) and I could pick them up at her place this evening.
It was a warm one here…for us at least! Sunny, not a cloud in the sky and 23C (73F). That might not be hot to some of you, but around here, that is definitely warm. I headed out on the road around 4:30. It was a bit hairy getting out of downtown with all of the cyclists heading home, but no big deal. I was at Edworthy before I knew it – 4 miles down. That gave me a chance for a bathroom break and an opportunity to fill up my water bottle. I’d already used up half of it and I still had a ways to go. There was a couple having a picnic out there with a boom box, head bopping to some Lionel Richie. Yeah… It was a short jaunt to Shouldice and then the work started. Bring on the uphills. And there was no shade. There was a whole lot more walking and I was slowing down. My mind was playing games with me…your running isn’t as good as it used to be…these hills are eating you alive…you can’t run distance anymore…how are you going to run a half marathon at the end of your half Iron? It wasn’t pretty.
I hit a neighborhood called Silver Springs 8 miles in and passed by a little strip mall. I was out of water so I stopped in at Mac’s. I sussed out the Gatorade section and settled on a bottle of blue stuff. Honestly, what flavour is blue? I can’t exactly tell. All I wanted was to pay for my bottle and finish this run off. But there was a guy at the counter who was trying to hit on the lady at the till and it was taking forever…!! Finally he had to go so I was able to get my drink, refill my bottle and get back on the road.
Gatorade…you were my saviour! The cold, blue drink felt so good going down, and about 10 minutes or so in I started to get some vroom vroom back in my step. Never has something felt so good, yet so indescribable. An amazing thing happened. My brain wasn’t back in the game, but my legs sure were. They were picking up. The only bad thing that happened after that was that I failed to duck low enough under a tree and I bumped my head but good. Finally…finally…I was back home. 12.15 miles later. So the plan worked out not too badly.
And now I’m exhausted, so I’m off to bed!