Something good eventually did come of it.
I start thinking about my post-work workouts around lunch each day. I’m not shy about admitting that my gym time is the highlight of the day – so when the little things I take for granted started stacking up against me this evening, I was a little worried that it was going to take a toll on today’s scheduled run.
Traffic was a little heavier than usual this evening, but being as it has been raining for most of the last two days, that really should not come as a surprise (what is it with Virginia drivers and rain? I swear, growing up in Ohio, people were less cautious driving in a snowstorm than they are here in drizzle). I finally make it to the gym, and the parking garage entrance I chose to go to today is blocked (luckily there are three entrances, but still, roadblock #2). So, several minutes later than expected later – no towels at the front desk. Then the only treadmill open is the slow one. I think, screw it, I’ll just hope that the 8 mph the treadmill claims to be running at – and definitely is not – is at least close to the pace I’d hoped to run today. But enough complaining.
About five minutes later, I got my break – one of the other “good” treadmills opens up. And that’s where my luck, at least temporarily, changes. Even towel-less (trust me, I would have killed for a towel by about mile 3), it ended up being a great run. Speed-wise, my best in quite a while. Maybe ever. The girl on my left kept me trucking, because I just happened to peek over and see that she was about 10 minutes ahead of me – and I wasn’t going to stop running until she was done (she did 5 miles. So I decided today would be a 5 miler … plus another 4 quarter miles with some speed work to finish). Then there was the girl on my right – she was doing some pretty bad-ass intervals – we’re talking 12 mph sprints – and we all know that I can’t be out-hardcored (pretty sure I just made up that word …)
So run I did, going with my typical can’t stay at the same speed for more than a minute at a time pace. I started getting a little curious once I was about 35 minutes in, because it like I was slightly ahead of my typical just shy of 9 minute mile pace. Verdict: 5 miles, 44:25. Yup, that’s an 8:55 mile. Which meant I’d managed to strip another 2 seconds off my most recent best pace. In the grand scheme of things, it’s really not that much – but those two seconds are points of pride for me. Made me forget about the traffic, and the nightmare that is the parking garage, and the slow start on the screwed up treadmill … and I would say the lack of towel, but my sweat-soaked limbs and knotted-mess ponytail (courtesy of not being able to wipe the sweat off of my neck and shoulders – I’m starting to wonder if the highlights, hair dryer and flat iron are totally to blame for my damaged ends … cause I’m thinking the sweat-soaked tangles that tend to form in the bottom two or three inches of my ponytail probably play a part, too. But no, I won’t cut my hair. But I digress).
Unfortunately, the excitement from a quality run wore off when I stepped off the treadmill, and promptly got stuck behind a “stander” on the escalator (they’ve surpassed cell phone talkers as my #1 gym pet peeve) – and some jerk standing behind me had the audacity to ask me if I “had to pee or something” because I was anxiously shifting my weight from foot to foot hoping the guy would get the hint and start walking. And still no towels.
But it’s all good. I think I’ll take several obstacles for an awesome run. After all, a good run tends to heal all my woes … and a great run will always make it a good day!