Running the Trinity Trails with Gaia

Running is not my thing. Occasionally, I forget that it’s not my thing.

I got the urge to take Gaia for a run in Trinity Park, which is a part of the Trinity Trails system, in the late afternoon yesterday. We headed out around 7ish and drove around for an incredibly long time trying to find a place to park. It wasn’t that there were a million people at the park, it was that not all roads around the park went to the park.

I thought I could figure out how to get there without mapping it because I knew generally where the park was from having gone there with Matt before.

After about the third time of driving across a road that seemed like it went into the park but instead crossed over or around it with no way of entering it, I’d just about had it. I called Matt, who called me back later and gave me some directions.

I was pretty pissed and profane at that point.

By the time we got to the park, I’d amassed enough frustration that the start of our run was fairly successful. Gaia, who didn’t seem phased at all by my mood, jogged beside me happily.

Gaia looking at some ducks by the river
Gaia looking at some ducks by the river

We’ve never run together before, although she used to frequently go on 2-mile runs with Matt when we lived in Lubbock. She tried to stop a couple times to smell the flowers (or more likely, duck poo and dog piss), but I kept running and tugged her along like Matt used to. She finally understood this wasn’t going to be a cordial stroll and fell into line beside me.

It didn’t take long at all until I started to fizzle and we began switching between running and walking fast to catch my breath. We stopped once for water when I saw a fountain that included a doggy water bowl.

Check out the route we took here. It took us about 40 minutes to complete 2.5 miles, pretty pathetic. And toward the end, I started feeling an uncomfortable ache in my right leg. It felt like a shin splint but went all the way up my leg to my right hip.

I’m not sure if it was just the unfamiliarity of the activity known as “running” or if my tennis shoes just suck. Perhaps one of my legs is shorter than the other. Who knows? It wasn’t a nice feeling but it ached just as much to run as it did to walk. So, I tried to jog as much of the way back as I could because it got me to the car faster.

Gaia was a tuckered out pooch by the time we got home. She drank a bunch of water and flopped down onto the floor. I was equally tired. This morning my leg muscles were incredibly stiff — a feeling I haven’t experienced in a while.

Although I still hate running, it was a lot more fun with Gaia tagging along. It was also great for her to get some exercise besides the dog park. I’m not sure I’ll be doing it again soon. I might just stick to walking with her out there. We’ll see.

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