It’s been awhile since I ran before the sun comes up. During the summer I do it regularly because of the heat here in the desert, but during the winter I prefer to run while my kids are in school. Today, with Phoenix RnR just 8 short days away, I decided to get my run on in the early a.m. because I didn’t want to put my son in the daycare at the gym – it’s flu season and we are in pre-race quarantine mode right now. No one is sick in our house and we’d like to keep it that way until after the race.
So the alarm went off at 5:45, and the weather said this:
27 degrees isn’t warm, but I know a lot of the country would love to see some positive digits on their thermometer right now, so I bundled up. Last week I scored a great deal at REI on this cute Moving Comfort Jacket and it proved to be the perfect weight and warmth for a winter run in New Mexico.
There are some great trails in Albuquerque for running, but when I run before the sun comes up I keep my routes to well-lit, busy streets. It’s not very scenic but I feel safer. Growing up I have always been a bit scared of the dark or creepy basements or haunted houses or being outside alone when the sun isn’t up, and even though I am older, I haven’t really gotten over that – although have more mental ability to reason that most of my fears are unjustified. So I have to tell you about this one place along my route. “The Pole”. In Albuquerque, many (most) houses are surrounded by cement block walls – something I wasn’t used to after moving from Wisconsin and huge open acres of land between each house. There is a point in my run where the houses (with their walls) end but the road continues. And just after the end of the wall there is this:
A random 5 foot wood pole stuck in the ground. Now, I know this pole is there. It certainly doesn’t move. But EVERY SINGLE RUN I just about jump out of my skin as it appears – because in the dark it resembles the height of a human? I don’t know. It freaks me out. To compound my skittish nature, I have just finished the first season of Dexter – a show about a serial killer.
Have you watched it? It’s a fantastic show, but it makes my mind go overboard on my runs in the dark. Maybe I need to put a silly hat on The Pole and that would make it better. Crazy pirate hat or silly wool hat for the winter?
So that is my post for the day. Another day that I survived The Pole. Do you get freaked out on your early morning runs?