Sunday morning when I woke up I felt lazy and lounged around in my recliner watching season two of Justified waiting for my four year old son Caleb to wake up. See, yesterday I had taken his sister on a daddy only trip to the library so Sunday was a Caleb day. Caleb came down stairs and asked if we could go get donuts for everyone still asleep. After a trip to Dunkin Donuts Caleb had picked out a mixture of a dozen donuts and was a happy and proud kid. Most of the rest of the day floated by with a short trip to a local train store for some Thomas merchandise and more of me being lazy, and restless. It wasn’t that I was skipping a workout I was just waiting for it to get later since I really enjoy chasing the sunset. Finally around 7:15 PM I grabbed my running bottle, some gels and knocked out ten burpees then took off for a run around Fort Drum.
I had planned to cover at least six miles stopping every mile to conduct ten burpees; I am currently training for the September Spartan Ultra Beast (a 26.2 mile obstacle course). This race is the first of its kind and something I am very cautious of, after completing 13 marathon or more races I wonder how this one will go down. After the first two miles I made then turn toward an area on post know as Remington Pond, this area has plenty of running trails surrounding a few ponds so I knew it would be a great place to run. I hit the first trail at mile 2.6 and stopped at 3.1 for more burpees. I was concentrating had on doing perfect exercises when I realized I was alone in the woods in the dark. I took a second to glance around and smiled when I noticed how close to a horror film this trail looked like. I had to make a decision at this point, keep looping around Remington pond until I hit the main parking lot and head back up the main road or turn back and only do 10k. I decided I would keep going hoping to loop back into an area I recognized, after all the trails all lead to the same place. Right?
I made it to mile four as I came into the main parking lot, knowing where I was felt soothing in an indescribable way. From mile four to five was un-eventful. Five was when my run became more interesting; as I headed back uphill toward home I noticed movement on the left hand side of the road. My side. Out of the bushes scurried a skunk and it was less then ten feet away.
Here is where I pause; this skunk has history with my family. Recently, this skunk has decided he would hangout in my back yard during nighttime. My kid can’t go outside without first checking the backyard, my dog has had some close encounters and my father in law mistook it for a cat when he was smoking. Mr. Skunk just likes the Swink family, or so I seems.
Back to the run, Mr. Skunk decided he would stay on the left side and I moved myself to the right and continued to run. After watching him for a few feet I realized he wanted to race and kept a straight line headed toward the last ¼ mile of the hill. I picked up my pace only to see Mr. Skunk pick up his, I knew somehow I was really the only one racing but I decided to beat my four legged nemesis. As I neared the last few feet of the hill Mr. Skunk surged and won, as if rubbing my nose in it he moved toward me and crossed behind my path into the woods. I kept going until I hit six miles; here I decided to do twenty burpees, knowing I would never hit 180 burpees without adding twenty every half mile. The last few miles were uneventful as I tried to hang on to a good pace and finish the workout. As I neared home I felt accomplished and exhausted all the same. Looking back on this workout it was a small sort of epic, I have ran farther, definitely faster and completed something that was tougher but for some reason this workout was extremely fun and exciting.
NOTE: There is zero way for me to confirm the identity of the skunk to confirm it was the same that’s been stalking my backyard, but for fun we can pretend.
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