It’s been a bit too long since I’ve been out for a run. There’s really no excuse. Alameda is very flat so I don’t have to contend with hills, and the weather has been fantastic. I have a great neighborhood for running, being surrounded by beautiful houses and just a few blocks from the beach. Also, I’m new in town and exploring by foot is the best way to find my way around.
So of course getting started was the hardest part. It’s always the hardest part but it helped to follow the slogan of the DSE Runners: start slow and taper off. I tell myself that it doesn’t matter how slow I go, that the important thing is that I keep going. I run into trouble when I’m forced to slow to a walk to wait for traffic or negotiate an awkward stretch of sidewalk. If I drop to a walk from a jog, it takes a lot to get going back to a run; it’s like having to get started all over again. I try to avoid it if possible.
Since I live near the lagoon, there are a lot of dead-end streets in my neighborhood. I did not plan my route exactly but checked Google Maps a few times along the way. I had a general idea of how far I wanted to go, but I had to go a few blocks around what I’d anticipated in order to avoid finding myself at the wrong end of a dead-end. So indeed, heading out on foot was good for me in learning my way around the Island.
Choosing to go out in the late afternoon/early evening meant there was a lot of foot traffic once I got to the beach (and a lot of automobile traffic before I did, but that only became a problem once when I passed up the opportunity to cross at a light and then had trouble finding another light or a long enough break in traffic to get across.) I stayed on the walkway but made a mental note to check the sand of the beach at some point in the future to see if it would be good for a stretch of barefoot running. I don’t think I’ve ever had a beach to run on before so this could be a good opportunity.
I’m signed up to run the Fourth of July RACE again this year, as I did a couple years back. I won’t be breaking any speed records this year (personal or otherwise) but at least I’ve confirmed that I can cover the distance. There really was no doubt — the RACE is a 5K and I’d have to be in even worse shape not to at least be able to walk that distance — but it’s still good to know that I can still get out there and cover a few miles.