Impromptu Run

Yesterday was Memorial Day – a holiday by most standards, unless you’re a grad student in which case the half day I put in was even lucky. Because I had work to do, despite the holiday and “relaxed” schedule, it still turned into one of those days I figure out 10 minutes beforehand when I can sneak in a run. This happened yesterday around noon. BF and I ran 4 miles together. It was a nice run, a nice pace and a nice day in the park.

The rest of the afternoon, after I finished my work, was spent on a friend’s building’s terrace, grilling salmon, chicken kebabs, corn, and s’mores. And of course drinking beer. We sat outside in the heat and sun for a few hours. By the time I returned home, around 8pm, it was turning into a perfect evening. The sun was setting, the breeze had cooled off, and the air temp was not too hot, not too cold. When I got to my apartment, I’m not sure why, but I was incredibly restless and just needed to get outside and DO something. And the best way I know how to do this is to run. So on went the running shoes and out the door I went. I left behind the iPod and the watch and headed out for my normal 4-mile loop in the park, which I decided to do backwards. With a crampy stomach full of partially-digested meat and beer, I plodded along. Good thing I wasn’t trying to set any land speed records, but soon the stomach felt better and I kept myself at a pace that I couldn’t feel – I didn’t feel like this was a workout, per se, just a way to enjoy being outside. I was able to look around me: at the families enjoying the waning hours of holiday sunlight, at the groups of people walking and running, at the NYC skyline, at the fact that the park looks incredibly different when I run my tried-and-true loop backwards, at the street musicians around which crowds were gathered… my restless need to get out the door turned into a “this is why I run” run. I guess maybe it’s been a while since I’ve had one of these – I didn’t have to worry about speed or distance or someone else with me or anything – just me and my breathing and the road. It was just what I needed.

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