The moon wasn't out, but Sawyer Camp Trail still delivered a beautiful Sunday morning run.
Maura and I took off for what would be her last real run before next weekend's race. All morning, I drifted in and out of reality, imaging what it would like to be running New York. The long drag through Brooklyn which I'd probably barely remember. Winding through Queens then onto the bridge. And into the city, into the roaring crowds down 1st Avenue.
Uptown to the Bronx and around the horn, through Harlem and back down along 5th Avenue. Into the park and done. I try to imagine what it will feel like, crossing the finish line, looking up at my time, knowing its done. Then I stop to try and retain my current no expectations mindset. But in reality I couldn't be more excited.
Maura set her usual metronome pace. I envy her consistency. As the crowds thinned and the leaves fell, my thoughts wandered from New York to the New England fall colors, the yellow leaves slipping gently through the air, fluttering to the ground in front of us.
There is something about watching leaves fall that is utterly relaxing.
The way back was longer than I thought it would be, my legs feeling better but still not great. Worlds better than yesterday, but I still don't have an 8-minute gear. The last few winding miles at Sawyer Camp can seem like forever, the twists and turns melting together. The convenient mile markers take forever to get there, no matter how hard you try not to look.
But my mind kept drifting back to New York. I'd check back and barely know where I was, so intense was my mental trip east.
I don't know how the race will go, but I'm more ready than I could have ever hoped just a few weeks ago. And I couldn't be more thankful.