I'm about to head out for a long run this morning and was reflecting again on how much I enjoy the morning jaunt. It really sets up the day well. Today the sky is especially blue, the air is crisp and cool, and the birds are chirping everywhere. All this, I think, contributes to a big truth about the morning runner: they are all happy. I've don't think I've ever crossed paths with another morning runner that doesn't seem to be having a good time. Now, I'm not saying that runners at other times of day aren't having a blast, but those out in the morning sure seem to have the edge.
For myself, I'm headed down to Lebanon Hills in Eagan. This is one of my favorite metro trail systems to run on. It's a fairly large park, being 10 miles or so around the perimeter. This is a nice bonus on a long run, because you don't have to repeat the same terrain ad-nauseum. It's also the closest place with a good amount of hills (Snelling is my closest spot, but it's dead flat down there). Lebanon has a good mixture of running in the woods and some open prairie along with a few sections around the big lake central to the park.
I have a couple of big weeks coming up. Coach K broke his arm so he has nothing but time to work on some wonderfully abusive programs for those of us he's mentoring. Four weeks until I head out to California to run some of the WS trail, 8 weeks until the show.
So, it's off now, strap on the fuel belt, key up the ipod, and start moving the legs.