RVA is a city of runners.
I see Runners everywhere. In fact, there has only been one time in my entire running life that I have run in RVA and not seen another runner. That was this year, on Christmas Day. I ran 4.98 miles, and it was the loneliest Christmas Day 8K ever.
That’s the one exception though. ‘Cos seriously, RVA RUNS.
I’ve probably run past the legendary Grove Ave Water Stop 600 times in the last 5 years. I’m not sure how long it’s been there, to be honest. I never paid it much attention. But I suspect its been there a long, long time.
On my long run this week, I was once again reminded that a long run requires planning. For some reason, I forgot that detail. I never used to forget that detail.
I’m not much of a “GU” user. I rarely eat the Gummy Bears offered by Marathon Training Team. Mid-run Food is not my thing. But the morning of my 14 miler this week I did not eat enough breakfast. About a half a banana and a tbl of peanut butter was all I managed to ingest. I just wasn’t hungry.
So. About that....
By mile 11 I was plodding along, a solid 3 miles from my car. My head was spinning a little, and I felt wonky. Definitely wonky, with a small dose of woozy creeping in. Not good things for the typical runner with 3 miles left to run. I turned onto Grove Ave, with the thought that I might be able to hit Starbucks and beg a packet of honey off them. With as much money as I spend in that Starbucks I thought “maybe”.
(Adam always has my coffee ready by the time I get to the front to pay...#itslikethat)
But about a block and half before the starbucks, I spotted The Grove Avenue Water Stop. And I thought, water might help. GAWS is advertised among runners as being open to the public, for the public runner. It’s like a little piece of runner mecca right here in RVA.
Still, I approached with trepidation, unsure of what I was going to find.
Well. I found clean cold water and a bowl of Clif Blocks.
Yes. Whole unopened packages of chews were waiting for the passing runner.
At first I hesitated. And then I thought about it and decided that if they didn’t want people to use them, they wouldn’t leave them here, AND that they’re runners, they would understand that I was in a pinch.
The nutrition made a huge difference for the finish of my run.
I got a little schmoopy as I ran away from the table about the fact that I live in a city of runners. Now, I don’t know that it SAVED MY LIFE. I can tell you, it saved my run.
This afternoon, I wrote to GAWS and thanked them on their Facebook Page.
And next time I run, if I remember, I’ll drop an unopened package of Honey Stingers or Blocks in the bowl on the table for the next runner in a pinch.
'Cos RVA... yeah, we're a city of runners.
~savor the run~