Today started out pretty tough, as I was getting ready to walk Bennie, I looked over and Joey (our black cat) was nudging his brother Domino, who looked like he was sleeping on the couch. Unfortunately, he wasn’t. He had died sometime during the night. Domi looked as though he just went to sleep and didn’t wake up.
This was totally unexpected, so it was a tough morning. We consider our cats and dog a part of our family and they are our friends as well, so it wasn’t a good morning – to say the least. I might be an old tough guy on the surface, but when it comes down to it – let’s just say I am not.
Central Maine Striders Group Run
The good thing was that today was also the Central Maine Striders “Nooner” Group run, which starts over at the Alfond Youth Center. It was only the second time, so we are still getting the word out and establishing that we are going to do it year round. So for a while the running group will be smallish, but hey we are trying. It was also a good way to take my mind off what happened to Domi.
For some reason or other Barry and Patrick, decided to let me choose the route today and me, being me decided on running over to Quarry Road Recreation Area and do some of the trails there. Not my smartest move, since I did the Bond Brook trails on Monday and then 10+ miles in the wind and cold yesterday – yes my legs were tired – I probably should have just stayed on the road, but I like trails too much.
Both Patrick and Barry are a LOT better runners than I am, plus they both stand around 6’2″ and here I am at 5’7″ with short stumpy legs, that were not cooperating when I suggested they move a little faster. However, the guys were great about slowing down and waiting for the “slow old guy” – especially going up that damn hill.
I was really glad when Patrick suggested that we only do the North loop – great choice. All those “little” rollers at Quarry Road were getting my leg’s attention and not in a good way. If we had gone up the South loop it would have gotten me – bad.
One thing that I found out the hard way was that I heel strike and lean back a little when I am going downhill (gotta work on that). Now how did I find that out? I hit a muddy spot with just a little ice in it going downhill and went ass over tea kettle.
I got my nice Central Maine Striders Jacket muddy and landed on my pride – ummm butt. There was just enough mud to be a pain in the toukus, but hey it is trail running (well easy trail running) and you got to expect to run in some mud on trails.
That is the giant downward spike on the pace chart. No injuries, just that stupid feeling you get, when you are trying to keep up with the “guys” and they have to stop to pick your butt up off the ground.
I was wearing my Skechers GoRun Ride2’s and while they are great road shoes and do good on dry trails, but in the mud they are useless. They are not made for this kind of running and today I really found that out. In mud they cake up on the bottom, which makes it so you are running mud on mud, which is interesting but not in a good way, very slippery and will cause you to (1) slow down, (2) changes your gait due to the extra weight from the mud, (3) pick yourself up off the ground.
I did all three.
At the end I needed another 10 minutes to complete my planned 55-65 minutes of running for today, so I ran down along the Messalonskee Stream Trail, while they went straight back to AYC. When I got back to AYC we talked for couple of minutes before we all took off for home.
Overall, a badly needed run, where I got to yak and gab about training, running and whatever else we talked about during the run and got my mind off what happened to Domi.
I know that I am enjoying these “Nooner” runs a lot and breaking up that not running with anyone else, during the winter is and will be nice.
So if you are in the Waterville, Maine area on Wednesdays at noon and are looking for someone to run for about 45:00 minutes or so (I can go longer), stop by the Alfond Youth Center. Look for some people with cold weather running gear on and join us for some great conversations and easy running, or if you really feel the need for speed, I am sure that someone will take you up on the offer :-).