Monday, September 13, 2010


Current location: metro north headed to Stamford (on phone so apologies for typos).

Past weekend was a good one- spent the entire time in NYC with a few of my buds. Started it off on Thursday night with the opening NFL game, then Friday was the mets - phils game with mark, kruse and erick ( who was in town for the weekend). The phils won and we got free Mets blankets that we ultimately handed off to LeRoy. Saturday introduced me to Opal and Iowa football followed by a stint at sutton place and ending with a hard food coma at kruse's which was not in the plan. Sunday was filled with football (pats looked good!) and a 16 Miler.

16 is the longest I have ever run and it's a completely different monster. I have hit 12 before and have felt tires at the end - the legs were sore and used to moving so the cool down was shocking, but my body could handle it. Each step was delicate but the legs still hand gusto and could fulfill their duty of carrying me. 16 was different. First, I ran with kruse who is used to this mileage. Second, I've only just gotten back to running each day hitting a total of 20 in the 5 days prior. Third, it was a constant drizzle and drab for the first 8, then it picked up to a rain for the next 5, then back down to barely anything for the last three. Usually I love running in those conditions, but after 8 your shirt sticks to you like an extra layer of skin and your shoes weigh an Extra 2 lbs, making each step a bit foreign.

We pulled up at 9.5 to have a drink of water and take in some calories, then continued on. I've been alternating between treadmill and outside running lately, so the freedom and the company made the first half fly by as fast as a 3 miler. At 13 I felt great aside from the poor conditions and the extra weight - I was even talking to myself about throwing 10 more on at the end to hit a full marathon. We had been hitting 8 minute miles or so the entire time, trying to keep an 830 pace because kruse has to pace the Chicago marathon in a few weeks to 4:00. I'd say a majority of the time was spent below 8:00 but we did out best to relax.

Then it hit me - a wrong step and a twinge in the hamstring. A cramp was right around the corner and we were about 2 miles from the finish. I've never cramped during a distance run - only after a tough workout or in a soccer game. I slowed quickly and kruse knew what was up - we slogged in the last mile and a half delicately do as not to trigger the demon. At one point we had to stop because of pedestrians clogging the sidewalk and the restart was painful. My legs didn't know what was going on - they wanted to buckle but I think they understood that we were 5 blocks away and determined to see it through.

The final stop was interesting - not as painful, more just unusual. Kruse and I were soaked standing underneath grand central - the endorphins were kicking in but it didn't really take away any pain. Kruse pulled out two of my soggy dollars and I bought a bottle of water- the vendor looked at me like I was crazy and was disgusted by my audacity to hand him wet currency, but that thought didn't come until after I took in the cold water. My knees started to lock up around the patellas, something not unfamiliar and generally not dangerous. Other than that, walking was tough but I was happy to hop on the subway. Aside from some small pains and allergies, kruse was fine.

Our route started at grand central, went down the east river, around the seaport to battery park, up the west side highway to 85th, then zig sagged back to grand central. Before running this, I thought if I were to ever jump into a marathon against kruse, my sheer competitiveness coupled with my current fitness would hold me long enough to finish close to her... Now I know that stepping up to these godly distances and churning out strong miles requires more discipline that I'm used to.

Currently looking forward to: finding out my next project.
Notable people met: Ryan Dewey, a few of mark's colleagues, bartender at opal who required my presence at the next Iowa game.

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