Sunday, May 10, 2009

I haven't done THIS for a while!

It was an exceedingly low tide today, -1.9 at 12:19, and considering that I was going to my parents' house for Mother's Day anyway, and also considering that the weather was pretty decent, it seemed like a good day for a run on the beach.

Even though I didn't get over there until about 1, the tide was still way out, allowing me to run all the way to the end of the spit in Tulalip Bay before stopping to turn around. Which was exactly 2.95 miles. No further. As I learned the hard way when I tried to run out into the mud for another .05 mile. One step and I immediately sunk to my ankles in sandy mud. I dropped to my knees to avoid sinking further and scrambled back to firmer ground.

Beach running, though appealing in many ways, is HARD. The ground is rarely even, so often I am running mountain goat style. The best surface, hard packed sand, is still slower than road, and when you throw in rocks, seaweed, and barnacles--well, 11 minute miles are a gift.

But still, by the time I did the first couple of miles I was enjoying myself and trying not to mind how slow I was going. (The only reason I cared was that I didn't want my body to think it was okay to go this pace on a regular basis.)

I hit 5.9 miles when I returned to my starting point, and 6 shortly thereafter. I thought I might go another mile and then head back, but soon decided the beach was too rocky to want to go much further. I was going to turn around at 6.5 miles, but then--at 6.34--I stumbled over a rock and hit the ground. It didn't hurt, so I was surprised to see blood on my leg when I stood up. The rock had been covered with barnacles and I was quite scraped up.

I thought about going on to 6.5 miles before turning back, but also thought about blood and gravity and pounding on my legs, and decided to walk back.
It still didn't hurt, so when I got to the beach house I kept walking so I could get to 7 miles anyway. The .68 walking miles threw off my average pace, but it hardly mattered. Slow or slower, what's the diff?

I rarely fall on the beach because I know the hazards and watch closely. And I go slow. :) Now I'll be wearing my Mother's Day memento on my leg for quite a while!

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