Kail and I (slowly) ran a 5k in support of women’s health over Labor Day weekend (the embassy celebrated the holiday on Sunday rather than Monday). It was the first time I’ve run outside here in Kabul — and probably the last.We weren’t outside outside, as in, off-compound, just outdoors. We ran a little 1k loop five times. The monotony isn’t what got me (having been confined to a treadmill for the past month, any change of scenery is a plus). What has convinced me to keep my workouts indoors from now on is the air quality. Running a 5k outside in Kabul is sort of like running a 5k while smoking Marlboro Reds.I ran for the t-shirt.OK, maybe that is an exaggeration but my throat and chest were burning during and long after the race, and I couldn’t shake a cough, constant sneezing or runny nose for the rest of the day. Part of it might be the super-dry air and high altitude (although I’ve worked out plenty indoors and think I’m pretty acclimated to the altitude by now) but I think it was mostly pollution. And maybe a small part being out of shape.I mean I can comfortably run three or four miles at a slow pace (gone are the days of marathons or even halves) but I’m far from race shape. I did beat my previous 5k time, but that’s not saying much considering it was on sand in the middle of the hot hot Salvadoran afternoon. I don’t know whether I like my surfboard-shaped medal/bottle opener or Embassy Kabul t-shirt more.Bottle opener or t-shirt? It’s a tossup.Respiratory problems aside, at least I got a t-shirt and blog post out of it!How was your Labor Day weekend?