Cross-training: Chicago Botanic Gardens

Cross-training: Chicago Botanic Gardens
The sucky shorter days do have a purpose--they make the trees and plants change color.

All running makes for a dull training program. Through my perusal of various websites and training programs, people seem to advocate cross-training. That is, I need to do some other form of exercise so my body doesn't get brain-dead when it comes to rote running. I could bike, I could clean, I could swim, I could do any number of things that gets me moving in a different way.

I'm of two minds as to whether I should count it as a "day" in training. If I did, this would be "Day 3." For simplicity's sake, I'm just going to call each running day a training day. I have a little calendar printout, and I'm highlighting my running days in yellow, and my cross-training days in pink. The pink highlighting will acknowledge I did do some exercise, while I keep an accurate count of actual days of running training.

So, that aside, today I went to the Chicago Botanic Gardens with my husband. We missed our bus, so we walked to Ogilvie Metra station to hop on the North Line. Since the Pace bus at Glencoe wasn't coming for a while, we got off at Braeside and walked to the garden instead. Why wait around for buses if you're able to walk, and aren't too tired? Normally we bike the distance, but we knew the winds would be too strong for us.

The gardens were wonderful. We missed the early tree colors, but a few strong stragglers hung onto their branches while the rest of the leaves made for a golden, crunchy carpet. I totally went out of my way to step on the leaves. Totally. You never really outgrow that.

We walked all over--often against the cold east wind. Even though my shoes were comfy, one of my toes decided to say, "HA HA! I've got a blister! Now what, bitch?" I didn't have a bandaid with me to muffle the danged thing, so I tried wrapping it in a Southwest Airlines napkin my husband had in his camera bag. That held until we made it back to the Visitor's Center, where the staff generously offered a bandaid and a single-serve antibiotic ointment. I put it on, telling the blister to STFU while we walked through every garden, except for the prairie.

Since the Pace bus again wasn't coming for a while, we decided it would be faster to hoof it to the Braeside station, and again walked home from Ogilvie station since we seemed to be having bad luck with the buses today. All in all, I think Jeff and I walked 8-10 miles today. As such, I'm rewarding myself with a session of writing more on my closed captioning library legalese paper for my Copyright class. Tomorrow will be Day 3.

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