After today’s 80 degree run in 60% humidity, I’m beginning to regret how I planned out my training cycles this year .
My office is right near Tower Rd and Garden Ave, so I started near the end of the loop on RunGo and went up Tower Rd (in the blistering sun) past the greenhouses to the Arboretum. At this point, I felt like the air had solidified and I couldn’t get quite enough oxygen out of it. The downhill on Arboretum Rd was a welcome sight!
I had been forewarned about the three sets of stairs to climb, so I tackled the first ones in a measured fashion (half jogging, half walking). The path off Bebe Lake up to the Observatory was lovely, and it was a stunning sight that felt like I could have been on another continent and in another century.
Didn’t love the hot, dusty pavement at the top of North Campus, but trucked along until the grassy “dirt” path skirting the golf course. This time of year, the path was completely overgrown so it took a minute to discern what would have been “dirt” back in April.
Not knowing where I was headed next, I trustingly followed the audio directions to the Palmer Woods, which initially appeared to be completely overgrown with poison Ivy.
Thankfully the path widened and I enjoyed a cooler, shady downhill stretch of trail into Cayuga Heights.
The next section through the neighborhood and past CNS (our old preschool) was fast and fun. I didn’t mind the suspension bridge, but the eternal stairs up to the Johnson felt like a cruel joke by mile 4. I brought over a liter of water with me and had to finish it off when I reached the summit.
Although I’ve seen it countless times, the view along the slope gets me every time. In each season, sub season, weather pattern and time of day, the hills to the south and west, the lake to the north, and the town below take on different colors and textures. Today was especially splendid. Like the James Taylor song, “Sweet Baby James,” these “deep greens and blues are the colors I choose.”
The final stretch across Ho Plaza and up Tower Rd was hot (did I mention that I ran at midday in July?!) and my office was a welcome sight.
A truly scenic course that took me on some favorite paths and introduced me to some new ones, combined road, trail, and cross country, and made us work for the finish: what more could you ask for in a challenge course?!!!