My hamstring is slowly recovering–enough that I can run a couple of slow miles without much discomfort. So when I made my annual trek to Washington D.C. with my honor society kids last week, even though we were staying way out of the city this time (due to Inauguration crowds) I was so excited that J was willing to drive out to run with me one morning. It was the Asscrack of Dawn 5K: BFE Edition.
My hotel was a mile or so away from an access point to the Washington and Old Dominion Regional Park–basically an old railroad line turned into a 45-mile long asphalt bike and running trail. And it was flat and smooth, with a parking lot 100 feet away. It was dark though–no trail lighting–so at one point when we heard rustling in the grass to our right we got kind of nervous. And the Eau de Skunk was fun too. But it was quiet, mostly just the two of us. Perfect.
We encountered a couple of cyclists who were using nuclear-bright headlights, so we had plenty of advance warning. It felt really safe, and I loved it. We ran an easy 1.55 miles out, then turned around to make it an even 5K.
I’m WAY out of condition–seven weeks of limited running has killed my endurance. So I ran a minute or so per mile slower than I would normally have run with her, but otherwise it felt good. Very little discomfort in my leg, and I ran with a mostly normal stride.
It was the one time on the five-day trip, about an hour total, I had for myself. The kids (and adults!) were all still asleep, so it was just me and J. It was a different route from the last couple of years, but it allowed me to discover something new–the skinniest park in Virginia!