Yesterday, I awoke with purpose. Not only was I going to get cultured at the Bower Museum in Santa Ana, hit up a dinner party at my new friend Holly’s home, and also manage to get to the library, but I was going to run around the Newport Back Bay, which, by my calculations, was a six mile jaunt.
I almost drove to the Back Bay, but it’s really only a mile and a half away, so since I had run seven miles a few days prior, I figured nine miles was an achievable goal, and would make me feel good about myself. With my house keys firmly placed inside my sport’s bra (still my favorite key holding method) and my iPod equipped This American Life, I started jogging.
Having only ever biked around the Back Bay, I knew I was in for some grueling hill action, and was rather looking forward to it. So many of my runs are hill-free, and it gets pretty boring, and I welcomed the change of altitude. The run started easily, and I’d only come across one piece of roadkill — a dead mouse — when my first episode of TAL wrapped up. As 20 Acts in 60 Minutes wrapped up, I took stock of where I was, and was a little disturbed by how much longer I had to run. I had figured a nine mile run would take me at the most 90 minutes, but by my calculations, I was only halfway done running. Was I really only running 4.5 miles an hour? That was sort of depressing.
I kept running, and started on another TAL episode, What I Learned from Television. There were not many runners or bikers out on the paths, so it was a very solo journey. I only saw one person to wave at, and I did, despite my un-waving nature. As my second episode of TAL dotted its i’s and crossed its t’s, I became even more concerned. I still had another mile to go. Nine miles in over two hours? I reminded myself that speed is not as important as finishing, so I maintained my pace until I got home, to a very surprised boyfriend, who noted how long I’d been gone as I gulped water like it was going out of style.
Curious about my disturbing lack of speed, I went to my favorite running site, Map My Run, and got my cartography on as I sketched out my run. And lo and behold, I hadn’t finished a nine mile run; I had completed over 12 miles.
Oops. I accidentally ran 12 miles. How is that even possible? I had only run seven miles early in the week because I had been motivated by a lot of cookies, and I’ve been a strict 4-6 miler for months now.
Maybe, much like planning fun, I cannot plan long runs. If I do, I mentally freak out. But if I don’t, I just go along with it because I want to get home.
An interesting thought. A very interesting thought.