Starting through the dark, I passed Gerald coming back from 12 miles to meet the John's. They would head out, following the same path and depending on the time standing around chit chatting, they would soon pass me. Or would they? While running cautiously in dark I know that I want to take my headlamp next time because of nerves of having some unforeseen rock grab at my foot and take me down.
It was uneventful and a consistent pace run and at mile 6 Gerald and the John's hadn't passed me and they were no where to be found. I had out run them. Later Gerald would send out an email that I took as a huge complement.
"I am still a bit un-nerved that we didn't catch Christina. I believe our days are numbered!"
I knew many people on the canal once I was further into the miles and the sun came up. At mile 9 I ran into Matt, my PT with Endurance Rehabilitation and quickly told him that I was happy to to see him, outside of PT that is. At mile 11, my insides had shaken loose and I had the opportunity to use a public restroom with no stall doors and stainless steel toilets complete with a homeless guy sleeping close by the restroom. Running further up through the park, in the parking lot some poor female runner was talking to a cop while he wrote up the car break in report. With as much sympathy I could etch into my face and voice I told her I was sorry as I ran by. Later at mile 14 I ran with some friends even though it required running the opposite direction and would add an extra mile to my 20 mile run. Id rather run 4 miles with someone on a long run, even if adding an extra mile. At mile 21 I felt so good I tacked on one more mile making it the 2nd 22 miler this training season and had an average pace of 8:54.
Being quite pleased with my distance and pace, I run up to the truck by the house, threw open up truck door searching for the muffins I made the night before. Where are they? There should be one left.
Searching out the muffin man, I ask...
Where are the muffins?
Muffins? comes the reply with a look of innocence yet puzzlement
We ate them all. Came the reply once the acknowledgement of what I was asking dawned on him.
You didn't leave me one? I should have told you to leave me one. (Later I realized I should have hid one in a fireproof safe mounted to the bottom of the truck to ensure a post recovery, glycogen replenishing muffin for ME)
In my head I did quick muffin math....9 muffins, 4 men, eating 2 each, leaves ONE MUFFIN.
Where's the last muffin? I question.
I tried to question the suspect some more and he mumbles something not there not being any more, something about one rolling around, some accusation about the other John. Basically nothing.
Was it John #1, John #2, Chip, Gerald, the homeless guy sleeping 9 miles away or a number of the friends I saw on the canal. I think it was probably the guys right after I left them first thing in the morning. Remember, they NEVER caught up to me within 6 miles and supposedly didn't leave too far after me. They were devouring the muffin. Unfortunately I'll never know and this will end up going into the cold case files.
So what did I do for my post run snack? I drove (I was too tired then to run) to the coffee shop and enjoyed a hot non-fat chai latte with a blueberry scone.