Most runners have a collection of random running stories to share.
Me? I must have random happenstance juju, as I have too many to count.
I’ve seen snakes, dodged a family of deer and been caught in a horrendous downpour in what was eerily similar to the woods in Oz. I ran into a flower shop delivery van (ouch) and was nearly clipped by a distracted contractor who then flipped me off. (grrr)
And I’m pretty sure I witnessed more than one drug deal while running along a nearby river trail.
I ran alongside Amish men and women, still wearing their plain clothes. I ran laps around Sydney Harbour, including the famed Opera House and bridge. I ran around the Hollywood Reservoir and along the carriage trails of Acadia National Park drinking in the incredible vistas.
Part of what I love about running is that it gives you a whole new view of the world.
Often, as you watch the world unfold, you encounter the unexpected.
So I thought I’d share my top random running moments with you, a la Golden Girls style.
– January, 2012, Rochester N.Y. in a heavy snowfall. I’m running with several of my regular running partners on an 8-mile loop that felt like the death of me as we trudged through piles of snow. On the backside of the loop, our group ran on the shoulder of a main road. The sidewalk was buried and we wanted to make sure we stayed upright.
Cue the snowplow.
It was headed straight for us. And to the driver’s defense, we were in the road and it was quite snowy. But that plow, it wasn’t slowing down or veering to the side. So we dove head first into the snow bank. The plow went by, the driver smiled and waved. We got up, brushed ourselves off and finished that run!
– August 2012, Central Park in NYC and it’s nearly 90 by 7 am. I snoozed my alarm one too many times and started my 12-miler later than planned. It was hot and horribly humid and I was in town to visit with Meri and take in a show.
I stopped at every water fountain I spotted and was seriously considering climbing the fence to the reservoir to dunk my head. The run wasn’t going well, the hills at the north end of the park made my legs feel like lead and all runners on the road passed me as though I were standing still.
About 5 miles in, I saw him.
I was running at the south end of Central Park, staring toward the hi-rises in Columbus Circle, thinking about how bad the movie Cloverfield really was.
Ryan Gosling ran past me in a pastel T-shirt and dark shorts. Our eyes locked for a second and on we went.
Wait a minute? I thought. What’s Ryan Lochte doing in New York? He should be in London prepping for his next big race at the summer games.
I shook my head and looked back over my shoulder. That wasn’t Ryan Lochte. That was Ryan Gosling.
I laughed. Still running, I looked down and thought what a sweaty mess I was. I laughed again, rather loudly.
And then I missed a turn, sending me back toward New York’s East Side instead of north. I laughed again and shook my fist. Gosling, you distracted me! Yep, people stared.
The run itself was awful. I was slow, overheated and thirsty. But the eye candy, that was real.
What’s the most unusual thing, or ransom person, you’ve seen while running? Tell us about it in the comments! And we’d love to see photos via twitter!
And most importantly, should I have turned around to chase Gosling down?