Monday, January 16, 2017

Running Through a Horror Film


A few years ago a wrote a post about how sometimes just an ordinary training run can become a memorable run, one you will remember for a long time to come.  Last Thursday's run was one such run for me.
haunted run

Let me set the scene. Since the temps were going to be nearing 60 on Thursday, I knew that was the day I was going to run on the trail. It sprinkled and rained on and off all day while I was at work, but it remained warm so I still planned to do the run.

As I was driving to the trail, the sky was blue and the sun was out. I was all excited about this warm run. As I turned down the road to the trail, grey clouds loomed. When I arrived, I found a ton of people all on the trail too. There were  several groups of runners from the local university, and then many of other people just walking.  Even though I was wearing shorts and a t-shirt, I decided to throw on my visor and windbreaker in case it started to rain again.

My plan was to do a 6 mile run/walk ( basically run all of the first 3 miles and then run /walk the last 3).

After mile 1, I checked my Garmin and saw that I was keeping a good pace. I was pleased.  After the first mile it started to sprinkle, then rain (a pretty light rain but was more than a sprinkle). Even though I had my visor on, I got water in my eye so started to rub it.  After I rubbed my eye, I was a little freaked out because I couldn't see, Oh no. Had I lost my contact lens?

I pulled myself over to the side of the trail and stood under a tree, which obviously did not provide as much protection from the rain as I was hoping.  I got my phone out (again, in the rain and was really worried about it getting wet since it has already started to go on the brink), but I had no choice, I had to look in my eye to see if my contact was still in tact somewhere, perhaps under my eye lid.  It was getting increasingly more difficult to hold my phone with one hand and keep my eye open with the other hand as I searched for the missing contact lens.  I knew there were others walking on the trail and I did notice an older lady behind me when I was running. Perhaps she could help me.

She must have turned around earlier because she never walked by. In fact, no one came by.  Finally, the contact lens fell out of my eye. I was relieved that I had found it, but again, trying to hold my phone and put my lens in while it was raining was very difficult.  It wasn't going well. I even had the thought of What will happen if I can't get this lens back in? How will I drive home?  I decided to put my phone in my pocket and just try to put the lens in by feel. I've been wearing contact lenses for more than 20 years, for sure I could do this.  After I few more tries, success!

Okay, after all that I had the thought of turning around and calling it a day since it started to rain a little heavier.  But I didn't. If I turned around now, I'd only gotten in 4 miles.  For sure I can run another mile before turning around.  When I got to mile 2.5, the thought occurred to me that I should turn around because it will be getting dark soon. But I didn't. I came to do 6 miles and that's what I was going to do.

When I got to the 3 mile mark I had planned to do a run/walk on the way back but the rain was coming down even harder now so I did a lot more running than walking.

It indeed got really dark fairly quickly. I was so glad that I had my Run Lites with me. However, I was only using one of them.  I had my phone in my jacket pocket, but my jacket was completely soaked and I figured that my phone was NOT being protected very well. I decided to put my phone inside the other Run Lite glove for a little more protection from the rain. I then put it in the inside pocket of my jacket and hoped for the best.

I have to tell you that the rest of the run back I was SO scared. I didn't see another person on the trail, and except for the light from my glove, it was dark. It was pouring down rain, I was running in the "wooded" part of the trail, and I could feel the mud slushing under my feet and kicking up on the back of my calves. I could tell I was starting to panic cus my breathing was getting heavier. I felt like I was running for my life, and I didn't even remember to bring my pepper spray.  Nobody even knew where I was.  I felt like I was in a scene from a horror movie for sure.

Around the last mile, the trail opens up a bit (less trees), and I can see the headlights from the cars driving on the highway near by. I can smell a neighboring home doing laundry (you know that smell of fabric softener when someone is drying clothes?), and thought Oh what I wouldn't give right now for a big warm fluffy bath towel. 

During the last half mile I passed a lady who was also running but she was running with an umbrella. She was wearing long pants and a long shirt so I couldn't actually tell if she was out on the trail because she was purposely running or if she just got caught in the rain.


I finally made it back to my car and a few minutes later I saw the umbrella lady again, which made me think that she was purposely running.  Everything on my body was completely soaked. I pulled out my phone and was glad to see that it was still in working condition. I stripped off my soaked jacket and t-shirt and although I did have an extra pair of pants in the car, I kept my shorts on because my legs were so wet (and I didn't have a towel), and I didn't feel like putting wet legs inside dry pants.

Even my drive home was a bit scary. It was dark, and I could see some fog rolling off in the distance. I couldn't wait to get home and get into a hot shower!

So, even though I will remember this as a horrific run, I will see the positives in it.

1. I set out to do 6 miles and I stuck to it (although I should have turned around earlier than I did)
2. I am thankful I wore my "older" shoes.
3. I'm thankful my ipod didn't go on the brink like it did last time I ran in the rain.
4. Extremely thankful my phone still works.
5. Thankful I was able to salvage my contact lens.
6. Thankful I'm still alive (okay, this may be a little dramatic).

Okay and after all this, when I got home to get in the shower, I found out that the strap on my Garmin was broken. -M

Have you experienced any of this on a run? What was your scariest run?

47 comments:

  1. Oh man, what an experience! So glad that everything wound up being okay and that you were able to find the positives in such a horrific experience.

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    1. Thanks Kathryn! Haha, horrific for sure. I'm not overdramatic am I?.haha

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  2. I can see how that trIl can get scary. Glad it all was ok. After getting caught in the rain (not on a run) I started just keeping a towel in the car. It really has come in handy.

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    1. Yes, I think that was a good idea and I should start keeping on in mine too. I did remember that I had a blanket in my trunk but didn't want to get back out of my car to get it.

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  3. Are you sure this didn't happen on Friday The Thirteenth? (it came one day early for you)

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    1. Ha, yes, it sounds like a Friday the 13th story for sure. My Friday was actually pretty uneventful!

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  4. Wow, that does sound scary AND unpleasant.

    My scariest runs are the ones where I set out and half way through a thunderstorm rolls in . . . with no cover in sight! It's happened to me a couple of times. That & getting lost on the run.

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    1. I'd be okay with a thunderstorm rolling in if it was still daylight out!

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  5. Sounds like you had a quite a day! That warm day run did not turn out so great for me last week either. I dont' think I've had anything quite like that happen!

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    1. And here we thought we would have a great run to go along with the warm day!

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  6. I was glad to hear you found your contact lens! I have these gas permeable super expensive contacts--if I lost one, I'd be SOL! Glad you survived your run.

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    1. All I kept thinking was "I 'm pretty sure these lenses aren't suppose to get wet". I do remember the lady at the eye dr office (20 yrs ago) telling me never to put water on them. Of course I'm sure they've advanced since then.

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  7. You are a very good storyteller. I was on the edge of my seat! I'm glad you're alive. I'm glad you found your contact. I'm glad your phone still works! So do you think that lady seriously was out for a run with her umbrella? That is hilarious! I'm trying to think of the last time I was scared.. if I get creepedone out because I see someone I normally get my phone out and pretend to make a call or actually make a call. However if it's raining that's not going to work!

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    1. At first I was doubtful that umbrella lady was purposefully out for a run but when she turned around and ran the trail the other way it made it seem like she was out there JUST for the run. Who starts their run with an umbrella? I am SO glad my phone was safe. I never had a case on this phone but I tell ya it's one tough little phone!

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  8. I have not had a scary run like this. But I have had an incredibly magical one before. We were staying in a hotel across the street from a recreational trail and I decided to take a run. It was an amazing wooded trail and I came upon two deer that weren't spooked by me and just had such a calm aura. Then, on my way back, as the sun was setting, I came through a patch of lightning bugs. I went back to the hotel room and woke up my son and brought him back to the trail to see. It was truly magical! ~Jessica Marie @ flashfittrainer.com

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    1. I'll take a magical run over a scary run any day!

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  9. Yikes, I am glad you made it out ok! I've had a few runs like that where I've gotten caught in the dark and things get scary quick! LOL!

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    1. I am horrible at timing things out and I think "Oh, just a half mine more" I can certainly make it before dark. I forget how quickly darkness can come. I am so glad I had my one run lite glove!

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  10. Girl. I would have been scared out of my mind! I'm so glad you made it back safe and sound!!

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  11. Yikes what a run! Glad you made it back safe and sound. I think my scariest run was when I ran into a bear... hoping I never do that again. It was just a young black bear, but it was very curious about me. I called my grandma to come rescue me. She was three miles away and it felt like an eternity before she got there, by then I had scared off the bear.

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    1. OMG, That is my biggest fear! I don't know why, seeing as I've never seen a bear on a run before but I know someone who saw one on the rail trail I run on while they were riding bike. It actually happened a few hours before I ran there. I can imagine how scared you were. I would have probably cried! Thank goodness your grandma came to your rescue.

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  12. YIIKKKKKEEESSSSS!!! You are one tough lady though sticking it out. I would have given up long before.
    That does sound like something out of a horror movie. Just imagine if you were still out there when that fog came in? I would have had a stroke.

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    1. I don't know about tough, but stupid yes. I SHOULD have turned around earlier.

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  13. Wow, that was quite a run! Contacts can be so annoying. I have also had them for 20 years but randomly they will give me problems. I also worry about losing one and having to drive somewhere! I dont think I would have liked being out on that trail in the dark and rain. Glad you made it back safely!

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    1. I've never had a lot of problems with my contacts until this past year. It may be because I switched brands.

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  14. how scary indeed! I don't wear contacts but i can only image how it would be like to have one out during a run. Way to go sticking it out - i don't know if i would have!

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  15. Wow, you went through a lot for those 6 miles! I'm pretty sure I've gone through all of these things, but never all on one run! Probably my scariest run was when I used to run at night living in Chicago and I knowingly did all the wrong things - earphones in, music blasting, ponytail ... nothing happened, but someone came out of nowhere and it freaked me out! Heartrate was going and adrenaline pumping for a long time after that! Glad everything turned out okay for you and hooray for getting your run in!

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    1. I had my music in but I did not have a ponytail. I actually forgot about the ponytail /safety thing. Thanks for reminding me. I usually wear a clip, but not for any particular reason. Now I'll start doing it for a reason!

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  16. Wow! What a mess! I can totally get myself creeped out at night when I'm running. I'm glad you were fine in the end, though!

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    1. I think it's good to get ourselves creeped out sometimes. It just makes us aware of things that could go wrong (and makes us feel SO lucky when they don't).

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  17. Wow, This does sound scary! Glad you made it back safely. And that you managed to do your 6 miles as planned!
    I get a little nervous at times when trail running, mostly re: mountain lions, which is a legit threat around here

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    1. Yes, I can see why! I would be afraid of mountain lions too. Is there a particular path where they are more likely to be?

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  18. That really did sound scary - I'm glad the run ended up being OK for you, but gah! Don't run in the woods alone, eek!!!

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    1. I know, I know...lol. Even in the areas we are most familiar with can be so scary at night (and in the rain).

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  19. Losing a contact on the run would be especially scary! Storms rolling in when I'm miles away from home is a fear of mine. Especially hail or sleet! I tend to err on the side of caution and run loops around home or on the treadmill in that case... learned that from bad past experiences :s

    So glad you are safe!!!

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    1. I'm okay running in rain, but I would not run in sleet or hail (which it rarely does here).

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  20. Being out on the trail alone in the dark without pepper spray can be scary, on the plus side the crazy weather probably had all the rapist and psycho's inside keeping warm.
    But I'm glad you were okay!
    Trail running in the evening, I don't do it anymore at least when I can avoid it.
    My scariest run ever a couple of guys in a van tried to abduct me, it's a long story so I won't share but it was a deer of all things that saved my life. I learned a lot of valuable lessons from that run.
    Likely your horror run will give you some things to avoid in the future to keep safe!
    P.S. I don't know how you got that contact back in, in the dark. I don't wear them, but I bought some colored ones once for fun and I thought they were nearly impossible to get in with a mirror in a bathroom. In the woods in the cold, you had someone watching over you for sure!!!!

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    1. I know. I can't believe of all runs, I forgot my pepper spray.

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  21. Oh boy, running in rain with contacts can be the WORST. I'm so glad you were able to fix that situation because for a minute there I thought you were going to say it fell out into the mud and you had to drive home without it!

    It's scary how fast a nice day can turn eerie!

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    1. I thought for a moment that I should have put sunglasses on to block the rain but then again I'm sure the glasses would have just got fogged up!

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  22. Wow! What a scary run! I hate it when something like that happens to one of my contacts. Thankful it hasn't happened on a run yet. Glad things worked out and made it home safe! Love Run Lites!

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  23. Goodness what can go wrong will go wrong some days. AT least it turned out okay!
    I have been on the trail in the state park near me and took a wrong turn and got caught in the dark with no pepper spray and a phone that was almost dead (I was using it as a flashlight) it is scary!

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  24. Oh my god!! that was an intense story! You do this stories really well, keeping us in suspense until the end!

    I love that you stuck it out and still finished the mileage you were there to do! even while not having sight on one eye!! losing a contact on the back of one's eye is no fun at all.

    What type of phone do you have? If you have an iphone ? do you use the location tracker on it? I share my location with most of my family, so at any time, they can check their phone to see where I am, and I can do the same for them. I bet you are putting a towel in your car now, I know I will!

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  25. The end is a safety running. You are really brave.

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  26. Oh My GOD!!! I am so scared about it. I don't like horror movie. If it happens to me, I don't know what I will do at that moment. When I read your post, I feel good but After that, I feel also scared. Your story was nice, Thanks. I will come back to your blog to read latest post.

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Fairytales and Fitness is a personal blog authored and edited by us, Meranda and Lacey. The thoughts expressed here represent only our own and are not meant to be taken as professional advice. Please note that our thoughts and opinions change from time to time. We consider this a necessary consequence of having an open mind in an ever changing society. Any thoughts and opinions expressed within our out-of-date posts may not be the same, nor even similar, to those we may express today.

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