Doing a long run on the weekend is a deeply ingrained habit for me. If I were to run for fitness only, my routine would be something like this: Run an hour a day for five days of the week, run 2 to 2 1/2 hours once a week and 40-60 minutes the day after the long run.
After my 15 1/2 mile run today, I tried to guesstimate how many times I have run 15 miles or more in my 31 years of running. I can safely say that I have run 15 miles or more at least 1000 times.
The most important day of the week for good weather is the day of the long run. I was disappointed by the forecast of wind and rain. Boo!! When I woke this morning I checked the weather forecast and it showed that appearance of rain was slightly delayed. I left the house at 7:30 a.m. hoping upon hope for a further delay to the rain. Taking the 30K easterly wind into account, I planned a run along the lake heading west and then a trek north through a forested area by the Humber River.
The lakeshore section was a breeze, with the tailwind. Near Sunnybrook pool I was overtaken by one of my husband’s work colleagues and we enjoyed a pleasant mile together. I considered running back east with him but his plan was to walk for a bit every 2K so with the wind-in-your-face factor added to this, I stuck to my plan. I continued on, heading north along the Humber river path. I find this path a bit creepy as there are not as many people running or walking here as there are on the lakeshore. A couple of decades ago I was passed by a “flasher” riding a bicycle. Since then I’ve been careful to run here only during peak weekend hours and indeed I ran by three runners in the short creepy stretch.
While running this route I realized that I had not run this way for nearly a dozen years. Thus, when I got to the trail-head, I realized that I couldn’t quite remember how this path connects with the other section of the path that goes through the north Humber. I tried to guess and went up one wrong street but thanks to the GPS on my BlackBerry was able to find the path entrance.
A big- time memory awaited me as it was on this section of the path that I became aware of the existence of a then-35-year-old-runner who is now my husband of over 26 years. I was running with a group which included my husband’s coach at the time who said, “There goes a fine young man!” just as this fine young man pulled away from the main group in following his instructions to pick up the pace at the end of his long run. Note to then-29 year-old runner self: fine young man, hmm . . . Incidentally, he was preparing for the Detroit marathon which he ran in 2 hours and 36 minutes.
In exiting the park, I got a bit lost again before I hit Bloor street where I made a beeline east all the way home. Well, actually not quite a beeline as I stopped at Booster Juice for a Ginger Hammer which has fresh squeezed carrot and apple juice and a bit of ginger. One of the best ways you can spend 167 calories, delicious and so nutritious. I also dipped into a stamp and scrapbooking store to see if they had a paper punch in the shape of a cherry blossom. No luck so it looks like I will have to order this on EBay. This has to do with my gala planning. The committee member from last year who took care of decorations has been ill so I’ve added decorating to my task list.
I felt quite strong in spite of having the wind in my face. Once home, I checked my route at gmaps-pedometer and was pleased to see that getting lost had added 1.5 miles to my route for a 15 1/2 mile total. If I run 5 1/2 miles tomorrow I’ll end up with a weekly total of 55 miles. With speedwork on Monday and Thursday I’m patting myself on the back for a solid week of training.
Well, better go check out EBay. If only I could remember my username and password. So many miles to run, too many passwords to remember.