I spent most of the morning cleaning up the house and getting extra beds ready for my sister's arrival on Monday. By late afternoon I was done with the house and eager to get a run in before it got dark.
A little secret about my running style. I am not a good runner. I don't run because I love it or I'm particularly good at it. I run because I would rather do a cardio workout outside than in the gym and I'm not quite skilled enough to cycle at more than a leisurely pace. I also run for distance not time. Instead of setting a goal to run for 30 or 45 minutes, I set a goal for a distance of 3 or 4 miles. What is the difference? If I run faster, I get done quicker and I can kick off those running shoes and get on with my day. If I run slow, the longer it takes for me to get home.
Today, I wanted to be done. It was freezing cold outside and curling up in a fuzzy blanket on the couch with a book and a cup of coffee was calling my name. So today wasn't about running intervals or running while taking in the beauty of the fall leaves on the ground, today was about getting done!
I set out at a good clip and stayed really strong for the first 2 miles. I felt good. I felt strong. I had some tunes playing on my ipod but I wasn't really listening to them. Instead, I was locked into a daydream. In my dream I was running a marathon and still feeling strong. I was 20 miles in and had just 6.2 left to go. I was feeling fierce. I was a running fool. Then it happened. My marathon race daydream came to an abrupt end when I suddenly found myself flying through the air. I felt like I was in a cartoon. I was suspended in the air grasping for something to reach out to in order to prevent a face-plant on the pavement but nothing appeared. Instead, my right hand and my left elbow absorbed the full force of the weight of my body crashing down onto the chilly pavement.
The shock, the shame, the blood. Not a lot of blood but I managed to get a few patches of road rash on my hands and wrist and I cut open the tip of my finger. Don't ask, I have no idea how I have a tip of the finger injury. My elbow was instantly sore and throbbing. When I looked at it I realized I shredded the sleeve of my very favorite North Face lightweight down jacket. Then I wanted to cry. Skin, muscles, and bone can heal but the fabric of my coat....done for.
I was on the verge of crying and laughing. Crying because I was in a bit of pain and as I mentioned, I tore my coat. Laughing because it is super funny that I was too engrossed in my little fake marathon daydream to pay attention to the stones under my feet!
I pulled myself up off the ground, put some gloves on my hands to ease the pain of my little open wounds in the chilly air (those would have saved my flesh if I had them on instead of in my pocket when I fell), I adjusted my newly altered jacket, and set out to finish this run. I ran the rest of the way home without incident and managed to log a really good time.
I could wrap this up and talk about how this is a great life lesson: keep your eyes on the path or you will stumble and fall. Or I could say it is a story about pressing on, even when you fall on our face. But really, it is just a story about how I tripped and fell today while running and I think the lady that witnessed the event is probably still laughing and she would have darn near peed her pants if she knew why I tripped.