Thursday, November 13, 2008

It's a wild, wild life . . .

I've begun to ramp things up a bit this week, in light of needing to "peak" for the 40-miler on December 7th and given that I have psychologically committed to running the Hyannis Marathon on February 22nd, still seeking that elusive BQ time.

This week has involved the following:
  • Monday - Elliptical / Lift weights / Core / Stretch
  • Tuesday - almost 7 miles
  • Wednesday - 10.5 miles, very early am
  • Thursday - 6 miles on TM (yuck!), with 3 at LT (lactate threshold or tempo) pace, 6:53, 6:53, 6:43

I'll take tomorrow off, run an easy 5 or so on Saturday and then do my first-ever 25-mile training run on Sunday. Right now, that will involve running 10-11 miles to meet my running club mates for our monthly group run (another 15 for me) before having our annual meeting/elections. My friend who's a bona fide ultra-running stud (13 ultras to his credit, including the Western States 100), will join me for at least the first 10 miles, since he's getting over an illness (pneumonia, I think), due at least in part to having pushed himself so hard for so long. Can't believe he's worried about keeping up with me.

The title of this thread comes from a Talking Heads song, and refers to my great Tuesday morning running experience. The kids were off for Veteran's Day, so I was able to go out at the civilized hour of 6:00 rather than at 5:00 or earlier (that was Wednesday, with a 4:55 start time). At almost exactly one mile from home, on a recently closed rural road, a huge MOOSE came out of the woods not more than 50 feet in front of, ambled easily across the road and strolled into a big open field on the other side. After living in New England for 13+ of the past 15+ years, I had never seen a live moose (don't ask), despite dire traffic warnings about their constant presence.

This guy was enormous, maybe 7-8 feet tall, with huge antlers and very dark brown fur. Unlike deer, who are sort of jumpy and make noise in the woods, this guy was quiet and rather graceful for a 2000+-pound behemoth. As I waited for him to pass, I started running again, and I turned back towards him for a final glance. Though his body was facing northwest (away from my direction), his head was turned towards me, clearly regarding me as curiously as I did him.

As one of my colleagues said later, "It's hard to be in a bad mood after starting the day off like that." True.


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