Saturday, 29 October 2011

Run together, die alone

Running with the group is such a fun experience. Every single time. There always seems to be someone new to talk to, and it's always great to catch up with the regulars. We hadn't decided on a route beforehand, so we discussed our alternatives when we met up in Skatås.

- Maybe around 25 km? I said. Preferably flat. I'm saving my legs for (the hilly terrain race) Finalloppet next Saturday.

Several others agreed that flat is good. Someone suggested running to Mölnlycke. Is it flat? I asked. Sure, said someone. Some minor hills but nothing too bad.

What followed were some of the fastest hills I've ever run. Let's just say that some people in the group are really good runners, and 5 min/km is slow for them – even on the million hills that we encountered. After a couple of frenzied kilometres, I breathlessly asked the guys up front to slow down. And they did. I love this group.

Skatås is really beautiful this time of year. Orange, brown, yellow leaves are blended with the evergreen firs and spruces. Some shreds of fog were hanging over the lakes, adding to the surreal atmosphere surrounding this place. 

We left Skatås and ran around Mölnlycke, through industrial areas and expensive villa neighbourhoods. H had the lead and took us past Gunnebo palace, where J and I sometimes spend lazy summer days picnicking with friends or just relaxing. It wasn't any less magical in the autumn.

Pic taken in the summer
Then it was time for me to leave the group. They were going to run back to Skatås, and I was running home. Suddenly, my legs felt heavier. Suddenly, the hills that might otherwise be easy felt like mountains. Suddenly, I found myself taking walking breaks on the worst of them and wishing I hadn't forgotten to take with me both food and water. It's amazing how fast your (imagined?) tiredness gets to you when your running friends aren't there to distract you.

I stopped at Mölndal station and bought a ”kexchoklad” (a sort of chocolate-covered wafer) and some water. I ate it while walking and drank water like I hadn't had water in months. Then I started running again. I took another such break on a slope later, but the chocolate had given me the kick I needed to cover the rest of the distance home running.

Just over 27 sunny kilometres was the distance I ran today. It was neither flat nor ”just” 25 km like I had hoped for, let alone easy, but it was one of the best runs I've done – thanks to the good company that challenged me, distracted me with good conversation and took me to places I hadn't been before.

1 comment:

  1. Hahahahaaaa! Älskar din inställning:

    "Someone suggested running to Mölnlycke. Is it flat? I asked."

    Are you crazy? skulle nog ha varit den mer vanliga motfrågan! ;)

    Det måste ha varit gudomligt vackert! Du är grym!