Arnold – 2 hours 10 minutes and 47.7 seconds 9:59 mile pace
Top 100 of his age group!
Lisa – 2 hours 20 minutes 28.7 seconds 10: 43 mile pace
Me – 2 hours 20 minutes 29 seconds 10:43 mile pace
For the most part it felt like one of our training runs. The three of us chatted and joked and loped along easily. Lisa’s husband Dan popped up on his bike at mile intervals to cheer us on and we foolishly commented that it was “pretty easy”. We really should know better.
At mile 9 Arnold had to speed up and leave because after 1.5 hours you need to run at exactly your pace, not faster or slower because is starts to hurt. At mile 10 Lisa and I hit what I call the “quiet zone” where you are just too freaking tired to be able to make conversation. You don’t have the breath or mental energy left. At mile 11 Lisa had to speed up so she wouldn’t stop. At mile 12 I started thinking that I might have to let her go without me. I am not a fast runner. It was really hard. Not impossible, but realllllllly hard.
At mile 13 with the finish line in sight, Lisa turned to me and said “Do you have anything left?” and I said “No.” I was already gasping for air. She said, “Okay I am going to sprint over the finish line.” I was so sad. Over the past month I imagined myself running flat out over the finish line a million time and now that it was in my reach, I had nothing left.
And well, I might be short, small and not particularly athletic but anyone will tell you, I am not a loser and I don’t like being left behind. Too tired to actually trash talk Lisa my mind rallied to my bodies side “Maghanoys will not be dusted by Kilkennys.”
We both sprinted the last .1 mile over the finish line like we were being chased by Godzilla.
It was so awesome.
Too nervous to put a real blog post today so instead you get an adorable picture of Nutty. I swear taking pictures of her is the only thing Arnold does anymore. What will it be like if we have kids? Anyways tomorrow morning Lisa, Arnold and I are running the half marathon. Hopefully I’ll be able to finish with some semblance of grace instead of hobbling across the finish line. 13.1 miles here we come!
Maybe it’s that I studied lit too long but I seem to see my life as some kind of grand novel. And today’s technique was foreshadowing. Since Saturday we’ve been talking about running with our friend Hernan. For some reason Arnold and Hernan have had many, many conversations about running on Tuesday night. Neither of these conversations seem to involve any exchange of actual information or commitment. And Hernan kept bringing up…. “But what if it rains?” On Sat it was crazy sunny, Sunday too and I started to think Hernan was wussy, so naturally I started to tease him. Yesterday he texted Arnold and said “Y que pasa si hay lluvia?” Arnold and I laughed it up, but then he turned to me and said “That phrase is like the end of a short story.”
Why can’t I ever see the foreshadowing?
Today it started raining. A lot. That’s how I ended up running through the Petsmart parking lot in a thunderstorm and needing to change my shirt at work. By the time I got home though it was clear and calm. Like any normal person I ate half a loaf of bread and decided it was best to skip running. Arnold reasonably pointed out that Hernan hadn’t called and might not be coming. I conceded that this was excellent excuse number two not to run.
Then Hernan showed up, apparently not concerned about rain after all our teasing. I might have mentioned that I’d e-mailed his wife Sade early in the day to tell her how fussy he was being abou the rain. And then because I have no sense and only want to tempt my destiny when we arrived at the track I said “See it’s barely raining”.
The absolute second we got to the track it started PISSING rain. The term pissing rain was invented for moments like this afternoon. Freezing hard, dense rain. The kind that falls during the last scene of a romantic comedy when the couple realizes they love each other and run towards each other in the moonlight.
It was really the perfect weather for running speed intervals.
After one lap I was totally soaking wet and truthfully at first I kind of enjoyed it. It was kind of like playing in puddles as a kid. Hernan was elated “This is just like Chariots of fire” he said as he easily jogged around the track.
10 minutes later I wanted to die.
20 minutes later I wondered what was wrong with me.
30 minutes later we were done.
31 minutes later it stopped raining completely.
35 minutes later I was stripping in my car cause flashing people was preferable to the cold.
“Y que pasa si hay lluvia“… well today we found out. You get really wet and cold. At some point you can’t feel most of your body, which is somewhat of an advantage.
While I was writing this note Hernan sent a text “We kicked Chariots of Fire’s ass!”
Indeed we did. Indeed we did.
To my one true love: A little more than two years ago you were hit by a car on your way to work. You were biking in support of the new job I got that required me to drive our car. It was a bad day. I can still remember very clearly how horrible it was watching you suffer in pain in the emergency room that day and in the days that followed after the vicodin wore off. Two days after the accident you took a linguistics test. Three days later you went back to teach. And now we’re here just a little more than two years later. Yesterday you ran a mile in a little more than six minutes. According to our trainer that is one of the fastest speeds of anbody in the 500+ group of people we are training to run the 1/2 marathon with. Everyday you amaze me and I fall in love with you just a little bit more.