Saturday, April 11, 2009

Finally... 20 miles!

Oh I am so glad to be home! Vacations are good, but don't you always feel you need a vacation from your vacation? Especially if your vacation is a week at a theme park and the park is so full it reaches capacity and every line you wait in is 90 minutes or longer - that's work not a vacation.

Another reason that I am glad that I am home is that I have to put in good work this week to get ready for my May 3rd marathon and I have already lost one day of running due to this vacation. I missed my 10-miler on Wednesday, but I was not going to miss my 20-miler this Saturday. Or was I? It rained like cats and dogs this morning and though it is not raining now I feared that running outside was not an option. I dropped my kids off at my mom's house and set off to the gym to begin my life as a gerbil.

I stopped off at the grocery store to see if I could find some GU packets or Clif Bars, no luck just some MetRx bars that I did not want. I grabbed my old favorites instead, Kellog's Sponge Bob Square Pants fruit snacks. Finally at the gym, I set up my water, my Gatorade, my phone, fruit snacks towel, and start to run. A grueling 3 hours on the treadmill ahead of me.

Opposed to last Friday's 15-miler on the treadmill, hours 1 and 2 were not so bad. One day of rest really helps. Hour three was mostly good, but miles 18, 19, and 20 commanded my respect. Luckily, I heard a friendly voice at the start of mile 19 that woke me from my agony. A young lady that I see at the gym frequently had grabbed the treadmill next to me. A serious feat because I thought that I had generated a serious funk between my 2.75 hours of exersion and the burn of my shoe soles on the treadmill belt. But soon I knew why. She said, "I am so jealous that you get to run a marathon soon." To some this may sound strange, but runners recognize this as the respect and comraderie that runners share with each other.

This young lady who I have seen walking with a purpose on the highest incline levels for 30 to 60 minutes. She was always walking though, and she looks like a runner. I found out that she had a terrible accident some months ago where she had a brain surgery due to falling when she was running on a treadmill. She, like Natasha Richardson, had an epidural hematoma and the reason she was spared a similar fate (death) is because she was knocked unconscious because Lord knows that we runner's are tough and would've tried to "walk it off."

The good news is that she, I am sorry that I didn't catch her name, is now medically cleared to run again and is looking forward to future races. Her toughness forced me to clear my head and finish my last two miles stronger than I had felt and her reminder that the last 10k after the 20 miles I had run are ALL mental. I remember her toughness on the Sunday of my race.

  • Total distance: 20.0 miles
  • Average speed: 9:29 min/mile

No comments: