Average pace: 4:50/km
Location: Burnaby Lake, CW
Distance: 11.84 km
Weather: Sunny, warm
Wind: light to strong
Calories burned: 840
Total distance to date: 1648 km
Ran: Piper Mill Trail, Conifer and Spruce Loops.
It started out warm and clear for today’s run but an unusually strong breeze kept things more than manageable for the duration. I opted to go clockwise and started right from the faucet near the dam to squeeze as much distance out as I could. My goal was to improve on Monday’s decidedly average pace and I accomplished that with room to spare, coming in a full seven seconds faster with an average pace of 4:50/km.
I was helped by having the issues on Monday not crop up again: no stomach weirdness, no right elbow hurting to distract me and an overall improved energy level that was more than sufficient to overcome the heat.
The branches were still on the trail for the third consecutive run but park workers were out trimming and clipping so I expect they’ll be cleaned up for Friday. I did take a closer look as I ran by and it does appear the branches either came down on their own or someone tried to murder the tree, as the limbs were twisted and broken off, not cut.
The one slightly weird notable part of the run was having three different bugs slam into my head. It’s odd to have it happen at all but three times and it was starting to get a little annoying. Don’t flies have compound eyes? How can they not see me? Stupid bugs.
The most interesting part of the run came after it ended. I was walking back along the Brunette River trail, listening to music on the iPod as I typically do after a run. Activity on the Highway 1 overpass has picked up this week so I had to carefully thread my way around construction vehicles and crew that were working on the overpass expansion. I moved onto one of the long straight stretches of the trail and walked by a woman with a dog. As usual the dog was not on a leash. This no longer gets much of a reaction from me, as nearly every dog owner ignores the leash laws.
But then I caught a glimpse of activity to my right and suddenly the dog appeared in front of me, barking, baring its teeth and acting like it was going to attack. It happened so swiftly I barely had time to form a reaction before the dog suddenly turned back, probably because the owner had called it off. With the music still playing and the woman far enough back I wasn’t able to hear her voice, if she had in fact said anything.
I turned around to see her standing there, the dog standing at her side and sniffing about indifferently. The woman said nothing, did nothing. Her face was expressionless. My face, however, was not. I had just finished a nearly 12K run and it didn’t take much to fire the adrenaline back up. I said to her in a firm, loud voice, “Put your dog on a leash.” Preferably the leash she was holding in one of her freaking hands. The woman offered no reaction. “Put your dog on a leash like it’s supposed to be,” I said in that same angry-but-in-control voice. Again, no reaction. I started back at her. By this point the dog was laying down in front of its owner, fully mellowed out after the unprovoked outburst.
I gave up and started walking. After a few paces I turned and repeated my directive yet again. Still no reaction from the woman, who could have been a literal statue at this point for all her non-movement.
I resumed walking and for good measure shouted out the need to leash the dog again, at full volume. As I moved out of hearing range I switched briefly to a litany of well-chosen curses and other invective, which made me feel a little better. I stopped once more and turned back. The woman, now a tiny figure in the distance, had still not budged.
I am not an intimidating figure. In my jogging shorts and shirt I am thin and sweaty, so it was hard to believe the woman was actually afraid of me. She was the one with the would-be killer dog, after all. More likely she didn’t like being yelled at (almost as much as she didn’t like putting her dog on a leash) and was giving me sufficient space so she could resume her walk without being told what to do by some uppity jogger.
I walked until I got to where the trail curved around a corner and took one final look. The woman was moving in some way, but only in place. Maybe adjusting a shoe or something. Or whispering new commands to her devil-dog. I shrugged and continued the walk home without further incident.
I remain baffled as to why the woman adamantly refused to leash her dog after it very nearly attacked me. She had directly witnessed the dog’s unpredictable and potentially dangerous behavior but was unmoved by it. Weird and annoying.
Still, good run!