God I love our sport. What other kind of activity can turn a cold day into one that's pleasant? What else can turn a biting bitter foe of a wind into a friendly push at your back. What else could turn treacherous icy ground into a running playground?
It's been a long week, and when I got home, it was already dark, I knew I owed myself a short run. Yes, I said owed. It's a treat to shed the computer, shed the indoors to reconnect. So, as I ran the trails out to do a 4 miler, I ran straight into a strong headwind. It was uncomfortable, but I knew the warmth would come.
I ran into the dark path of the waterfront trail and it was all my own. It was me, the wide open road, and cars streaming on a nearby highway. On one side, the silent lake, and a slight light from the city and sky illuminating the horizon. I hit the two mile mark and started to enter the part of the path that had big patches of ice, some blanketed with a crusty snow with just enough give to give a runner some traction. I decided to venture forward and so the next mile was like this: four steps pavement, four steps on ice or snow. My stride tightened, my arms went up and my senses heightened. I almost forgot I was running since I was spending so much effort trying not to slip. It was so much fun.
I turned at 4K, and suddenly the wind ceased. Other runners will recognize this moment on their out-and-backs when a rushing wind of resistance suddenly aids you. So I literally breezed on to home, enjoying dancing on ice, enjoying the silence and peacefulness, enjoying the city skyline from afar, and enjoying the extra mile...
5 miles in 42 minutes.