I got up early Sunday to get in my long run before church. But, I slept in a little longer than the alarm went off, so I allowed myself only enough time to run without stopping and taking a 5 minute shower before heading off to church. The run started well, uphill into the wind, but I warmed up well in the first 30 minutes. Then I had a series of 8 minute stretches at race pace. The first one cruised my at a sub-8:00. I had just finished a small section out of the industrial part of town and was now on the bike path nearly a quarter mile from my house as the crow flies, or in this case, the geese fly. There was a dead goose on the trail that I ran around and then I noticed two geese out in the field who were looking none too happy with me. They started squawking very loudly at me, took flight, and came right at me with their mouths open, their feet fully engaged, and their wings flapping.
Let me back up. I hate birds. Always have. When I was a kid, a very small kid mind you, I was chased by a very large pelican. Then when I was in the Young Scientist program at the local science center (yes I've always been a nerd) I had an owl hound me during a session. And finally in high school I had a very large owl come to my window every night and wrap it's talons around the screen. FREAK! ME! OUT!
So when these geese came out me I totally flipped out. I was screaming NONONONONONO!!! I ran as fast as I could out into the street (thank God for no cars on a Sunday morning) and got to the median where they left me alone. If I had been wearing a heart rate monitor all kinds of bells and whistles and alarms would have been going off. Out loud I actually said, "Fine. You win. Run is over." And I headed home.
I didn't finish the run Sunday and I have yet to set off in the direction of those geese again. The dead one is still there and every time I drive past it I look for the angry geese out in the field.
Have you ever been attacked by birds or other animals on your runs?