Friday, March 27, 2009

Road Trip!

The kids are on Spring Break this week, so we packed up the car and headed out for a quick road trip. We moved to Minnesota almost 5 years ago, and much to our surprise, no one in either of our extended families has decided to make the move to the North Country to join us. Can you believe that? For some reason, below zero temperatures and big snowfalls don't sound enticing to them. Mike, who loves winter, is convinced that they must all be crazy. I'm guessing they feel the same way about our love for Minneapolis.

Our move several states away from home means that we have to travel pretty far to find someone that is required to enjoy spending time with us. Tuesday we took out and drove 10 hours south to St. Louis, MO. The weather gods shined on us and we hit two very nice days of weather in between days of cold and rain.

Unfortunately, the marathon schedule doesn't stop for road trips, so on Thursday Mike and I headed down to Forest Park for our long run. Luckily, this is a cut back week so we only had to put in 15 miles. There is a nice bicycle path around the perimeter of the park that is perfect for a long run. Forest Park is a beautiful, urban park with a zoo, art museum, science museum, history museum, boat house, outdoor theater, paddle boats, golf course, tennis courts, ball fields, and even a large outdoor skating rink. Can you tell that I got the full tour on Thursday? The park is also right next to Washington University and downtown, so there is a wonderfully eclectic group of young and older park users.

On my first lap around the park, I had a "restroom emergency." This time of year, not all of the restrooms in the park are open, and as I neared the Science Center I was getting desperate. The museum wasn't open yet, but I spotted a sciency looking fellow getting out of his car. He took pity on me and let me in to use the facilities. Thank you, Science Guy!

Here is a picture of the Science Center that I took on my second lap. I love taking pictures during a long run for my blog because it gives me a good excuse to stop for a few seconds!
There are several lakes in the park. Here are some people fishing in Jefferson Lake:

I finished the 15 miles in reasonable time with no complaints, although I was certainly glad I didn't have to go any farther.

When Mike and I lived in St. Louis, I had just started running and had worked myself up to running for 30 minutes. At that time, I was still sticking to the familiar areas around our house and didn't venture very far away. It's kind of funny that it took moving away for us to seek out new places to run. Since we've moved, we've run Forest Park a few times and even done a trail run in Castlewood Park. It's kind of fun to look at the place where you spent most of your life with new eyes. I certainly wish I had taken advantage of beautiful Forest Park when it was closer.

Now we're in Indiana for a day and then it will be time to go home. I'm hoping that the snow that Minneapolis got while we were away will be gone by then and that Spring will be there to stay. I miss my runs at Baker Park and on the Luce Line and could really use some nice warm days to get me through the next 4 weeks of tough training.

I can't close without saying that my thoughts and best wishes go out to those in Fargo. The marathon is 42 days away, and I hope that when race day arrives the city will be celebrating it's victory over the flood waters. Thanks to Tom who has been updating his blog with pictures and news and Natalie who has gone to help with the sandbagging.


Melanie said...

Sounds like a great little road trip! Thank Gawd for nice science guys :) Enjoy!

Jean said...

Sounds like the family is having a great time, Beth. Enjoy the rest of the road trip. My, how nice it must be to see some green grass!

Sunshine said...

Amazing good luck and intuition to spot the sciency looking fellow!!
We are in a winter storm watch on Monday-Tuesday: Welcome home to MN!

Dori said...

Great job getting your long run in during vacation. I miss running on the Luce Line, too. sniff.

When I ran the Fargo half the Red River had flooded that year too and the race was re-routed. I have fond memories of Fargo. The residents really make you feel welcome. For that reason, I'll take Fargo over Duluth any day. Uff da!

Velma said...

Great post - I love the photos of forest park. I am glad you got out of the StL before the bad weather.

IronJenny said...

Welcome Home!!! I will see you this weekend...