6 miles. Could it happen again, the same thing as yesterday?
Yes, in spades. Today is the first day of following a self-authored marathon training plan. Sure, I’ll go to yin yoga, but I think I can see a gap in the thunderstorms to get a 6-mile loop of a run in.
I know rain in bursts is expected throughout the day, so why not run then yoga? I start out and it’s clear. I run the loop I did yesterday but in the reverse direction. It’s nice to start off as my objective is to stay right near 8-minute mile pace.
All goes well, I enjoy a slight breeze and a few waves from older walker-type people on the route. I think to myself that if I do a blog post, maybe I will title it “I ran through a hole in the storm” or something similar. As I head south again, at Mile 4 and towards Mile 5, I see dark gray skies ahead. Just like yesterday. I definitely feel I’ll be home right as that starts to either pass over me or begin raining.
In an uncanny twist, right as my watch beeps its signal for another mile completed (#5) it begins to rain. I pass a guy walking in the opposite direction – he says, “I think we are going to get wet.” I look up and see clouds passing very quickly – faster towards me than the 7 or 8 mph pace I am running. I’m not making this one home dry.
As the rain and wind pick up, I am inside of the final mile – running solo on the same path as yesterday. I decided yesterday I would note how runners may want to learn how to “pee themselves” while at pace in case they ever have to. Well today, that’s me. I’ve done it in adventure races, a few scant marathons, and during cycling. It works as I remembered. Easy!
The skies are emptying on me now as lightning, more than yesterday, flashes nearby. Knowing how close the thunderclaps are to the flashes tells me it’s right overhead. I am running with barely an eye open into the wind-driven rain. Every few steps I wipe my face and try looking out the other eye, you know, to keep things even and symmetrical. (Funny time to think of those details, right?) I splash through the streams of water that are rushing to low ground in the PGA Park parking lot. Some steps completely cover my foot in water, some are on grass, it’s hard to look ahead as the wind is coming from where I’m heading – directly south. There is no one else outside. I have less than 1/4 mile around the lot then to Northlake Blvd, I luckily catch the traffic signal turning green in my favor. A few more hundredths of a mile and I am clicking OFF the Garmin watch and summarizing the run under the “finishing” archway in my neighborhood. Average pace – 7:56. This is because I increased my pace in the final mile. I was right on target for 8:03, my recommended “conversational pace.”
Day #1 marathon training is done.