As we're entering the Wisconsin Av tunnel Sara Crum makes the mistake of mentioning that she rides horses. I commence a monologue on the subject of how the discovery in the 1890s of the optimal way for jockeys to crouch (cf. ) increased horse speeds by 5% within a decade. Fortunately for all I manage to stop myself within a few minutes.
It's a cool but hyper-humid morning as I leave home at 4:01am and jog ~4 miles on the Capital Crescent Trail to downtown Bethesda. A rabbit scampers away from my headlamp's glow as I'm crossing the Columbia Country Club segment of the path. Then another one darts out and swerves back to dive under the fence. Gayatri Datta is perfectly on time like last week (2009-09-26 - CCT RCT Loop Plus) and shortly after 5am we're heading south on the CCT.
Two more rabbits race away from us in the first mile. We discuss family and I try to learn the names of Gayatri's sons (Rahul, Arup, and Shomik). At Fletcher's Boathouse we pause to powder our noses and I phone Sara who is already on her way to Bethesda from her home in McLean. Gayatri and I turn back at CCT milepost 8.5 and peer ahead in the gloom in anticipation of seeing Sara. After several mistaken-identity cases it's light enough for me to turn off my light, and near mile marker 5.5 Gayatri recognizes Sara's silhouette and running style approaching.
As the sun rises two more rabbits race across the trail ahead of the three of us. I try to learn Sara's sons' names (Tyler and Wade) and we joke about how poor memory becomes during a run. Back at the Bethesda parking lot now herds of runners are gathering for group training jogs. I greet Jim Farkas and others that know me better than I know them. After a car stop to refuel we go eastward across the high trestle and I continue straight as Gayatri and Sara branch to the Rock Creek Trail. The new shoes I bought last Sunday at the RnJ Sports half-price room—Brooks "Trance" size 12-D—feel like wings on my feet. Most of the run today has averaged ~11 min/mi, including break times, but after 17 slow miles I blast out a final mile home in 8:23.
^z - 2009-10-05