Let me start out by saying that no people or turkeys were harmed. I wish I could say the same for the deer. It may not have been deer. I'm not sure when deer hunting season in PA ends but if not deer some type of wild animals did not surivive the day.
Today was my first 10 mile day for Bob Potts Marathon Training. I drove out to Evansburg State Park where I met Ken for the first 4.5 miles on the trials. Our mutual friend Sue says that we did meet once before in a winter trail run last season with Pete. I have a vague memory of that. Ken is the only other of Perki's People that I know is running the Bob Potts marathon. I was happy to "meet" him today. I learned during our run that Ken is married, has two young boys and is an AD at a local school. He is a New York and Georgetown sports fan at heart. I have forgiven him for both. He was a great running partner, very patient with my slowness and fun to be around.
We decided to follow the Skippack Creek Loop Trail for 5 miles. Not being sure that we wouldn't get lost we stuck to an out and back plan since Caroline B was due at the park at 9 for another 5 miles. When we came to a split in the trail, Ken pointed out that there was a hunter to our left so we went right. A few minutes later we heard the gunshot. We heard a few more as we moved along but they didn't sound close.
It rained a lot last night so the trails were muddy, the creek was high and all this made for a pretty fun run. The trails were not as hilly as the ones at Wisahickon where the Misery Loves Company (MLC) trail group was running today. I think it was a good choice for me to come here instead. We did have to cross small rivulets of water, go over and under trees and in one spot I couldn't decide how to get around the puddle so I went for it straught through and sunk in the mud. That was cold and kinda funny.
We returned safe to the parking lot. Ken left for home. Caroline wasn't ready for muddy trails so we decided to run on the street. Caroline set her timer for 2 and 1's and off we went. We started on a park road and when it turned into a traffic road we crossed over and decided to run through the golf course. It is a public course. I figured if they didn't want us there they would say so and we would leave. Due to the very mild temparatures (for January) today there were a lot of golfers out there.
If you think about any golf courses you may know they are pretty much a bunch of rolling hills. So we went up and down, up and down and up and down. We hit our turnaround mileage and started back. We were almost to the edge of the golf course when we saw somebody teeing up. I thought the ball was going to go in a different direction. Instead, for the first time in my life I heard someone actually yell "Fore" and it was directed at us! It's a good thing we were heading toward him. It was easy to see the ball coming straight at us. We had plenty of time to dodge left. As we climbed the hill laughing, the man's partner commented that we were very lucky. I told him I thought it was better than the bullets in the park. He laughed.
We continued on. My Garmin beeped at mile 9 as we coming back into the park. I let out a "whoop" for only one more mile on the day. Caroline said I was going to scare the deer. I said I thought that might be a good thing today. Shortly, after she says, "Look, a turkey!". Cool. I started creeping over to take a photo. Caroline says "I don't think you will scare it". I got closer took the photo and headed back to the road. Caroline to her credit was not flat out laughing. She was smiling though as she told me that she was keeping her distance "In case it was real". Yes, I fell for a fake turkey. We laughed so hard it was difficult to run.
So I managed 10 miles today with some help from my friends. I feel good. The first 4.5 were so much messy fun that I hardly noticed them. I did have to stop and walk a few times and I was breathing heavy a few times but I never felt burdened. The second 5.5 went by amazingly quick too! I thought switching to the road was going to kill me. I would have preferred the trails the run was just fine.
My only slight disappointment is that my overall pace was over 13 minute miles. I really want to stay near 12 for the marathon. It's ok though I've got lots of time.