The Everyman: I’m In Love (With Running)

Fall running can be a time of reflection after a summer of training and racing. Photo:

Sometimes, not having to run is all it takes to get out and run.

I did something last weekend that I haven’t done in months: I went for a run because I wanted to.

There was no pressure of having to run because I was training for triathlons, which I did all summer. I’m the first to admit that I didn’t put in the running mileage that I should have leading up to my half-Ironman race last month, and I suffered a bit on the run because of that.

All summer, I was forced to put on my running shoes because I had upcoming races to prepare for. It was hanging over my head for months.

Get off the couch and go for a run! Shut down your laptop and put your Newtons on! You rode your bike last night — go for a run!

Not that having to run is a bad thing, because it’s not. But when you’re someone like me, who isn’t as in love with running as other runners are, the weekly grind can wear on you.

That’s why my run Saturday morning was so great.

RELATED: Fall Running Shoe Buyer’s Guide

My fiancée and I met our friend Steve, who owns the local triathlon store, and another runner at 8:30 a.m. It felt like fall in Virginia, even though we’re still technically in summer for another few days.

I was wearing running shorts, a running shirt and arm warmers. The temperature was somewhere around 50 degrees so there was no sweatband needed.

As we stood around stretching, we plotted our course: Three miles west on the W&OD trail, and three miles back.

Six easy miles.

Because I wanted to.

The run was … perfect. It was peaceful. Serene. We talked about bikes and running and triathlon. We talked about how nice of a morning it was. We talked about running shoes and Steve’s upcoming trip to Interbike, an annual trade show that started this week in Las Vegas.

It was a perfect morning with crisp weather. I kept glancing at my GPS watch but there was no need to, other than to check our distance. I didn’t care about pace. All I cared about was enjoying this nice run with great people.

Afterward, as my fiancée and I had breakfast at a coffee shop in town, we gushed about how great of a morning it was. And about how great of a run it was.

It kind of made me fall in love with running again.

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