Friday, February 6, 2009

and then there are not so insignificant numbers

I just ran my fastest time up and back on Meridian Ave (the three miler I do all the time.) It felt really good. Strangely, I didn’t even feel like I was pushing particularly hard. Maybe that’s the secret – don’t try to run fast, just run… fast.

Just a few days ago I was looking back on my previous best time on this route from last September and wondering if I would ever beat that time – if it could be broken – if it was some kind of fluke never to be repeated.

I didn’t plan on going out fast on this run. It just happened. It felt quite unusual. I noticed that right away I just started motoring along with a short quick stride. Usually I start out slow and blend into a long lumberjack stride. Even within the first quarter mile I was curious about what was going on. It was like my body was numb and running its own run, uncaring of what my mind might have to say about it.

I was reminded of a running race from decades ago – probably around fifth or sixth grade. We were running around the perimeter of the football field for a few laps – I don’t recall how far the race was – maybe about a mile or less. This was just for a PE class so it was just me and my friends racing against each other. For most of the race I was just dogging along in the pack not racing, not caring. But with one lap to go I noticed John Borovicka running way ahead of everyone – probably a half lap ahead – and suddenly, for no particular reason, I bolted. I ran faster than I ever had or probably ever will. By the last stretch I couldn’t even feel my legs as they sped along - I was in a trance – similar to my experience today.

Alas, in the end, though I caught his heels, I couldn’t beat John to the tape…

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