Monday, July 4, 2011

Hiking and Bloodthirsty Critters

We never got to go kayaking today. We’ll save that for another day. Instead, we went for a day hike through River Highlands State Park in our town. The weather was sunny and warm. After plenty of rain recently, the bugs were enjoying our presence. I swear, mosquitoes and other DEET-resistant, blood-sucking critters wait in the woods for the next victim to enter their trap.

The picture painted was probably worse than...

it really was, although Jenn and Evan would not likely agree.
The trail takes you out to the Connecticut River; first to an overlook and then down to the water.

There's a nice bench here to sit on.

Happy me before the 8-legged encounter

When we got to a campground I opened an outhouse door only to see a massive spider hanging over the door. Too chicken to go inside to take the picture, Jenn took the camera, swooped in and got a shot of the foot-long arachnid. What a brave woman. Okay, maybe it wasn’t a foot long, but it sure seemed like it. One would never have guessed that at one time I had a tarantula as a pet.

Looking north.
Today was a recovery day after a 23 mile run yesterday. I did the run in good time (3:16) with hills and a hydration pack with 40 ozs. of water, which was just enough. The good news: I ran better the 2nd half than the first (1:40 [8:46] and 1:36 [8:20]). Granted, there were more hills in the first half, but I'll grasp onto anything to boost morale. It was 68 degrees with a dewpoint of 65. I used one GU pack at 7, 14, and 20 miles. I made sure that I had a 20 gram protein bar in the pack in case I finished too far from home. I like to eat protein and carbohydrates within 15 minutes of completing a hard run. Since the 40 ozs. of water was just enough, I’ll need to take the 64 oz. pack the next time out. I remember running out of water during my Miami Marathon training in Florida. I suffered from that mistake.
Since River Highlands is right along my running route, I’ll detour and run these trails on occasion. I know I can outrun those bloodthirsty critters. Bring them on!

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