Went out for a 10 miler along the Charles yesterday. It was the first long run since the marathon and it was interesting running without a specific goal in mind. I remembered pointedly when I did my first 10 mile run and it was such an important milestone for me. This was just a workout, but in some ways it is equally significant. I was running because I'm a runner, not because of an upcoming race or event. It feels good to be out there for a solid workout at a fair pace because it is part of my life. I was wearing one of my Boston Marathon shirts and I saw a woman with one as well; we exchanged a knowing glance and my pace picked up a bit. There were plenty of runners on the path around the Charles and I felt more a part of them than ever.
As I got to the Mass Ave bridge I knew it wasn't going to be 10 miles so I went on to the Longfellow and revisited the site of my first lunchtime runs at ChoiceStream. By then I had settled into my run rhythm and I could let my mind drift as I passed and was passed by other runners. I rolled up my long sleeves and dug a little deeper for the last 3-4 miles, wanting to get some speed work. The route is so familiar that I don't really have to thing, in contrast to the trail run I did with Mats last weekend where I was constantly looking at the terrain.
Monica summed it up for me - I'm training for a goal, but I just don't know what it is yet.