Thursday, April 29, 2010

A sensory run

I think the majority of runners have a few standard routes that we follow. Yes, we'll change it up or extend it for the long runs, but I think each one of us has a go to run. The one we can run in our sleep, without thinking, and before we know it, we're a few miles into the run.
In DC, I have 2 versions of this route. My mid-week route, which can vary from 4-8 miles, and my weekend long route, which varies from 10-20 miles.
Last night, I was doing 5 miles, and was going through the motions. I have been running this route for about 18 months, and don't really need to do a lot of thinking while I'm doing it. However, I started to descend from the first hill (around 1.5 miles), and on my left, I saw a statue of the Virgin Mary. I am sure it has been there the whole time, but this was the first time it caught my eye. It was a good sight - made me feel like I have a little extra protection when I'm out on the road. Better keep my eyes peeled, I thought, maybe there's more that I'm not seeing.
I continued on, footsteps slapping the pavement quickly. Ever since Boston, I've felt, well, lighter. Getting through that marathon and all of the training with it was a big moment for me. It showed to me that I can accomplish big things, seemingly insurmountable things, things that people may have thought I could not do. Running Boston gave me a new confidence in some ways, and has provided me with some reassurance that even if challenges come my way, they can be overcome. But I digress...
The next part of my run takes me around a neighborhood park and elementary school. It is getting late in the day, and a lot of people were hanging out and playing. All of a sudden I hear, thwack. The sound of a baseball connecting with a bat. A perfect hit. Spring is here. I love that sound - and I'm not even a baseball player! But it is just a great sound.
I continued on through the neighborhood. Lots of houses, people going in and out, and the wind was picking up. Then, the gentle tinkling noise of a windchime. Hadn't heard that in ages. Felt like I wasn't in DC, but in a neighborhood removed from the hustled and bustle.
The end of the day was nearing. I set out in broad day light, and throughout the 5 miles, the sky change. From bright blue, to red and orange, to dark blue.
It was a run like every other, in some ways. The route didn't change at all from my normal path. But my eyes and ears were a little more open. So, I'll stay vigilant - who knows what else I've missed?

1 comment:

  1. Every now and then, like this morning, i run without my ipod and you know what? it really does change a seemingly "normal" everyday route into something different. i pay attention to sounds more but also enjoy the quiet too. this morning i heard bullfrogs in the pond...or could it have been alligators grunting. i like to think it was just frogs. the sounds of some funky sounding birds was kinda cool too. You are right, running feels different after Boston. Keep riding that wave!