a home schooled High School age girl and I work out on the 2 mile asphalt loop at Bear Creek Park in Houston almost every Monday morning. We have always left our water bottles sitting under one of the benches near the tennis courts and no one has ever disturbed them. We are also aware of the men in orange suits who do a very good job of cleaning up the trash that seems to be everywhere on Monday mornings.
Yesterday, April 25, we were extending our distance to 4 times around the loop, so we both had electrolyte supplement and some nutritional product with our water bottles, so that we could stop at each loop and hydrate properly. At the conclusion of the 4th loop of a very intense workout, we approached the bench where we left our water bottles and they were gone.
I asked a couple of other park patrons and they said the men in orange suits had been cleaning in the area. I jogged over to the van and asked their supervisor if they had put our personal belongings in the garbage. One of the bottles was stainless steel that I had paid about $30 for. He was not very interested in helping me, however, one of the orange suited men who was seated in one of the back seats of the van handed my stainless steel bottle to him and he returned it to me. Whan I inquired about the full bottle of Gatorade, my friend's plastic water bottle, and my Hammer Nutrition Products red and clear plastic bottle, they merely shrugged and suggested I could dig through the trash if I was inclined to do so. I was not aware that these men were allowed to keep anything they find at the park, and isn't it ironic that the bottle they chose to keep was the most expensive one.
This park is always fairly crowded with walkers, runners and cyclists, and I have never felt the need to lock my bottles in the car. I never expected that men who are doing forced community service would be the ones to force my hand in this matter. I intend to continue to use the facilities at the park, it is lovely. But from now on, my friend and I will be forced to return to the vehicle to hydrate.
Now for a personal observation. Before I started the Paleo diet, and until I became very settled in to the lifestyle, I would NEVER have approached this van, or said anything to anyone about my belongings being stolen. I would have just gone home PISSED OFF. Of course, I am still pissed, but at least I got my Kleen Kanteen back. I will just have to place another order from Hammer Nutrition and get another Hammer bottle.
As for the workout? It was amazing... first thing Monday morning, I went to the gym and did a full body weight routine at 6am. Yes, I said 6am. When I was done, I drove to the park to racewalk with my friend. She is amazing, and we had an awesome speedy racewalking workout! 8 miles, average pace 12:14! It breaks down like this: Mile 1 - 12:20; Mile 2 - 12:00; Mile 3 - 12:09; Mile 4 - 12:16; Mile 5 - 12:24; Mile 6 - 12:24; Mile 7 - 12:25; Mile 8 - 11:47. It's nice to still have something in the tank at the end of a long walk!