Tuesday, September 2, 2008

What the Heck?

What the heck is happening to me? :) Gil sent me an email 2 weeks ago telling me he has an extra entry to the Oak Brook 1/2 Marathon. Do you want it? He asked. Oh yeah, I love to run and would never turn down a free entry.

I haven't done much running this year. Wait did I just say that? Let me rephrase that, I haven't done much running this summer. I've been trying to get my cycling legs back. My race season was a wash after Rockman. But I have to admit I enjoyed the rest. Swimming, biking and running only when you feel like it was all good for me.

Well, I picked Gil up Monday morning, 5:45. He was ready to go. He has the best spirit. We talked about our running plan for the morning. I would be happy finishing around 2 hours. He wants to see how fast he can go.

The race had about 1500 runners. I started feeling guilty (you can't be surprised by that) thinking here I was running for free, literally crawling out of bed to see what the day brought and most of the runners trained all summer for this day. I did hear some talk about their training plans for the marathon just a few weeks from now. I actually missed the training schedule.

Well, my legs missed the training as well. I was tiring by the second mile. YIKES! I brought my music along on this run, so I was able to let Jackson Brown, Bruce Springsteen, Rod Stewart and the rest pick my pace up when I would start to waiver. I managed to keep a 9 minute pace for about 6 miles. This was an awesome race course. Scenic, hilly, shaded in spots, plenty of volunteers to point you in the right direction and lots of police directing traffic.

Unfortunately at mile 6 I began to fall apart. For me, what I'm about to write is almost blasphemy. I'm a runner not a cyclist, you guys are probably tired of reading that but that's the way I think, that is until mile 10. I see this woman riding her bike. The streets were pretty clear thanks to the great police support. She's sailing along. I actually wished I was on my bike instead of running. What's the world coming to?

Here's a great excuse for my poor performance - other than not being conditioned for a long distance run ..... my diet has been filled with lots of crap - just plain old junk food - remember? .... circus peanuts, ice cream, tootsie rolls - I'm still on the comfort food diet since the kids have gone back to school :( I did my best to forge ahead and managed to finish around 2:13 and change :( - How arrogant can I be? It's time to start training again. Start out slow and low, I know 13.1 miles isn't exactly low miles, let's just say it's a long warm up and work my way back. The thought of turning 44 on Thursday makes me wonder just how close to my old times I can come. With age comes wisdom and sluggishness. Let's hope I'm wrong about the sluggishness.

Oh, here's a kick in my pants about my "not much training - so of course I did poorly excuse". So I cross the finish and there's Gil smiling as usual. "How d ya do?" and he tells me with this huge grin - "GREAT" 1:38 and change! AMAZING! No serious running plan and he spits out 7:29 miles. And, I can't use the age excuse - he's older than me (Sorry Gil) not much older tho. Ok, now I'm sticking to the diet theory. No more circus peanuts - I'll miss them and NO ice cream, well maybe a scoop or 2 with my birthday cake.

Louisville, I'm com'n. It's going to be an interesting year. :)

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