Georgetown Run


My new running shoes embarked on their maiden voyage today.

Running is the best way to really get to know a city. To find all the little small streets, old stores, and wooded trails that take you away from the bustle and into the core.

We ran up into Georgetown, down to the waterfront, and along the Potomac through Chesapeake and Ohio National Park. We crossed under what Brock has appropriately deemed "the world's scariest tunnel" and onto a small trail that jutted off perpendicularly from a busy street into thick woods. Tall trees formed a dense canopy above us, and the flick of Brock's shoe in front of me kicked up flecks of mud onto my calves. If it weren't for the roar of airplanes flying low overhead into Reagan National Airport, I would've forgotten where I was.

The woods gave way to a vast, open meadow. A few minutes later, we crested a hill onto Reservoir Road, leading us up a steady slope onto Georgetown's campus. Past the medical center, past the dental school, past the French embassy, and finally down to Wisconsin Avenue.

Wisconsin is a gradual downhill road. The final mile home. My body succumbed to gravity as I sunk into my hips and ran without thinking. That's the best type of running. When your brain doesn't even register the movement of your legs and they just pump pump pump like Quixote's windmills.

Instead, all my mental efforts were exerted in one primal concentration: Keeping my body in motion. I focused my eyes on any approaching obstacles, and stepped gingerly, quickly around them to avoid breaking my stride.

I'm a very quiet runner. My steps are light, and once I settle into a rhythm, my breathing is barely audible. No matter how many "On your left"s I say to people ahead of me, my stealthy movements always manage to surprise/terrify at least one person as I pass them. Whoosh, shriek, jump, "I'm so sorry!", "No worries!", repeat.

But I like this--it makes me feel like I'm running how I should. How my ancestors did, when they had to move quickly and quietly through the woods to kill that night's dinner. Except I'm not dodging trees, bushes, rocks, or rivers. I'm zigzagging through 20-somethings whose arms are full of Zara and Aldo bags, cutting around people stepping into limos and taxis, and winding my way around street lamps, stop signs, and garbage cans.

And now, here I am. Home. But not just home in the sense that I'm sitting in this little 20X20 apartment that Brock and I share for the summer. Home in the sense that, for the first time in a long time, I feel connected to something. Maybe with my body; maybe with nature; maybe with the savage, raw person inside me who just wants to run on the land until she reaches the end of it.

I don't know what it is. But I know I unleash it when I knot up those laces.


  1. I don't know how far you run (I stick to 2-3 miles at a time, so I never made it this far) but there are fantastic trails on and around Roosevelt Island, which is like 4 or 5 miles from the Barlow Center.

  2. You know, you're a talented writer Kristi. Also it's embarrassing how much I read your blog. People tell me I hero worship you too much (and by people, I mean my fiance, but I hate that every comment includes "my boyfriend" or "my fiance" because it makes me look like one of THOSE girls, if you know what I mean. But the fact of the matter is, I always tug on his sleeve and make him read your blog. So People= Jeremy. Forevermore).


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