Friday, August 3, 2012

Late Summer

Much to my surprise, late summer is already upon us.  This might not seem like a noteworthy observation, but late summer is a magical time for running.

Last night was warm and muggy (not hot and muggy, thanks to a summer storm passing just north of us), which is rather typical, and the equally as typical effects were in full force.

Running came with ease, albeit not quite as quickly as it might feel; the obscenely high humidity and dew point ensured that.  Breathing equal parts water and air comes with a price, I suppose.

The late summer tends to bring out the best in other runners, too.  The company of those who have weathered the 100+ degree days for months on end is easy to enjoy, especially when everyone is of the same opinion that truly fast running might be better suited for *another* day.  This enjoyment is enhanced with the seemingly contradictory inevitable burst of speed.

...maybe the word "speed" is a bit generous...

The route itself, by now a fixture of the collective weekly routine, passes underfoot with ease, each root and trench known all too well.

Also known all too well are the endless swarms of gnats, which as the evening progresses will undoubtedly magically transform into a ubiquitous mass of mosquitoes.  We all make the obligatory jokes about caloric and protein intake due to swallowing these gnats, and I was even lucky enough to collect one in the eye that was still there this morning.  (the strange things you notice whilst brushing teeth...)

The wildlife were aware of the perfect conditions as well.  My six or seven rabbit sightings were eclipsed by others' raccoon, turtle, and coyote sightings from the morning.

The late summer is certainly a time to be cherished as a runner.  All too soon, the days will shorten, temperatures will drop, and we'll all be discussing the challenges of winter training.

...which will bring its own set of fascinating observations, no doubt...

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