The first lap of the run was in black darkness. I was scared to death as I met much wildlife. It reminded me of the Batman movies - always darkest before the dawn. There are dark times in our lives where eventually light enters to brighten our fears, doubts, and emptiness. Just when we think we can't, we rise above it and shine! Yeah, that's what this run was like. I don't usually run alone, and almost never in the darkness of the night. I couldn't help but think of overcoming my fears during that first ever marathon training season. Yes, it was like Bruce Wayne making his impossible climb out of the dark hole, overcoming adversity.
Enough sappiness for now. About .25 miles into the run I looked at the side of the road and saw what looked like a mink curled up. The longer I looked at him I realized he wasn't just "sleeping" there, his eyes moved about and he took a couple steps! AHHHH! These animals are known to be vicious and I certainly didn't want him coming at me! About .75 miles I heard lots of rustling in the corn. It was too dark to see but there was definitely an animal in there. Yikes. About mile 1.5 I could smell a nasty skunk, right after hearing some rustling in the ditch. Yep, it's getting closer to me. About mile 2.5 I heard another animal in the cornfield.
I think I was literally running scared by this time. I had my last turn back into town to pick up Rachael. I got on the busiest highway on the run. There was a street light behind me and car coming towards me. I looked down to turn on the light in my watch and shine it in the direction of the car so he could see me better. I got a glance out the corner of my eye and saw a DOG! He was at my feet, scared me crazy as my heart skipped a beat and I stopped breathing for a bit. I swerved into the vehicle lane trying to jumpstart my heart again. Oh wait, that was my shadow from the lights!! There was really no dodge at all! I'm sure the driver of that car was a little confused. lol It was the weirdest thing ever.
I finally made it back into town and got Rachael so we could continue on with the run. About 1.75 miles into that run Rachael said, "OH MY GOD! Did you see that?!" See what? There was a huge deer that was jumping across the landscape from a field and onto the property of a nearby farmhouse.
All in all, it wasn't a bad run. I wanted to start off really slow (10:00-10:15 pace) and gradually speed up (9:15 pace). That was nice theory, but considering I was tracking around a 9:30 pace the first 4 miles, I think it was truly a case of running scared. Overall it was a good pace, but I was seriously all over clock - paces between 9:20-10:38.
today's mileage: 12 miles running
weekly mileage: 12 miles running
monthly mileage: 12 miles running
annual mileage: 413 miles running; 415 miles riding; 10.6875 miles swimming
TOTAL mileage: 814