>General Running>imaginary run
I envisioned an idealized run and created an imaginary map for it. It kind of combines features from different places that I have run. When in top shape I can do 20 miles no problem, so I choose that distance. I park my car in a lot in a park by the start of a boardwalk near the ocean. A quick stop in the rest room, splash some water on my face and I'm ready. It is pre-dawn and still chilly, I can still see stars and the moon is about to set. I do a warm up along the boardwalk for two miles, very quiet except for the roar of the breaking ocean waves. The sun rises as I near the end of the boardwalk.
I cross a wooden bridge over a little rocky stream as I start the next two miles that follow a bumpy, windy trail though the woods. A bit of fog there gives the trees a mysterious appearance. I can hear the morning songbirds. I emerge from the foggy woods onto an asphalt road and miles five through eight are a series of four hills each about 25 to 30 feet high, going up each one and down the other side. Around me are farms with wide open fields and patches of trees. I pass over the stream again at the end of mile eight and the next two miles are a gradual climb of 150 feet. The sky is clear, but some dark clouds to the west and a slight breeze.
Starting to feel warmer now. Mile 11 descends 50 feet and at the end there is a convivence store where I can buy a large iced tea. Just past that is another park, a small one near a rocky waterfall. I sit for a rest break at a picnic table as I finish my tea. Alright, enough relaxation, get the legs going with another mile of 50 foot decent through the woods.
The start of the 13th mile begins the major challenge and I struggle to climb 250 feet in just a mile. Kind of steep for me and my pace slows to short shuffling steps, get to the top and stop to catch my breath and look around. Looking back I can see the long path of the road I just ran and the course still ahead. At 350 feet above sea level this is my highest point of the course. So down I go descending 330 feet over the next four miles to just about my starting elevation.
It is now 70 degrees and I am rather hot, but rest of the run is rather flat and it starts to lightly rain. Mile 18 is back in farms and fields and the sun come up as I cross the bridge over a river at the start of mile 19. Now I am in the city and run a bit over a mile on sidewalks. There are people around me and some tall buildings. I reach the park where I started and am on nice gravel path. I take another rest stop on a bench by a pond. On the water there are patches of fog from the rain and a small boat with two people fishing. I'm feeling sore and tired, but a short rest refreshes me enough to get up and finish the last mile at a decent pace. I pass a playground and hear and see the children playing. I reach the start of the boardwalk and stop my timer watch. A good run!
I drive back to my house and enjoy a cold ale on my back deck, relaxing and watching the clouds drift overhead. I hope you enjoyed this imaginary excursion and will share some of your own ideas
AN IMAGINARY COURSE MAP WITH AN IMAGINARY ELEVATION CHART:
"My dear, here we must run as fast as we can, just to stay in place. And if you wish to go anywhere you must run twice as fast as that.”