Sunday, August 28, 2011

It Will Take More Than a Hurricane!

I woke up at 5:30am for what was going to be a 19 mile training run yesterday and I just couldn't get going. Five hours of sleep two nights in a row just took the wind out of my sails. Normally this wouldn't be a big deal I would just go back to sleep for a little bit and head out for my run a little later. I went back to sleep.

When I woke up and finally got out of the house for my run it was about 1:00pm. I knew I couldn't waste any time because Hurricane Irene was headed up the coast. It hadn't started raining yet but it looked like it would any minute. Instead of taking the route I had planned out I decided to run south to the Southwick bike path. The plan was to do 9.5 miles and then just turn around and come back.

About 1 mile in I looked at my Garmin and it said I had a pace of 9:00 per mile. I thought that was amazing since I was feeling really good. and that pace was faster than my usual long run pace. About two miles in I had the same pace and the rain started. It was a light rain but I thought to myself. No big deal. A little rain wouldn't stop me.

At three miles i reached the path that led to the bike path. It starts as a dirt path in Westfield and about 1/2 mile it becomes a really nice paved bike path that goes from Southwick, MA all the way to New Haven, CT.  Eventually the dirt path will be a paved bike path that comes very close to my house in Westfield. The dirt path was in pretty good shape considering how much it had rained recently. As I reached the paved path a steadier rain started to come down and the winds began to pick up. My shoes started to get really wet and heavy but I kept going.

Before long I was approaching the furthest south I had gone on the bike path and the rain was coming down even harder and the wind was ripping. I still ad about two miles until the turn around but I was determined to finish 19 miles. The only way i was turning around was if there was thunder or lightning. I saw several trees down and I wondered if they fell during this storm or were left over from the last storm.

When I got to the 9.5 mile mark I was along a stream that was swelling and I noticed some signs up ahead. I thought to myself that must be the Connecticut border. It was less than a quarter mile away so I decided I still felt pretty good and I was already soaking wet I might as well just turn around at the signs. I quickly made it to the signs and just as I had suspected it was the Connecticut border. I crossed over a bridge into Connecticut and turned around to head back home.

I was getting really thirsty and began to drink my water. I only had one bottle with me. My plan was to refill at the new water fountain they had installed a few weeks earlier along the bike path. I also began to really notice how heavy and wet my running shoes were. they were starting to rub weird on my feet from being so wet and I heard a slosh with every step. I finished my water and my Honey Stinger chews about two miles from the water fountain. My upper back, shoulders and neck were beginning to get really stiff and I took a short walking break. I started again and really was having trouble with my neck. I pushed my self to go at least a mile before another walking break. I really tried to stretch my neck, back and shoulders. I was almost to the water fountain so I kept going.

When I got to the water fountain it was broken. Someone had jammed the button all the way in and the town must have shut off the water so it wouldn't run constantly. I couldn't believe it. this fountain was only about two weeks old. I was really thirsty and really wet and had about 5 miles to go. When I got to the dirrt part of the path it was a total mess. I decided to take a walking break rather than risk slipping in the mud and hurting myself.

When I got to the road I had exactly three miles left and it was still pouring. With driving rain and wind I got a boost from a nice downhill and I finished my run even though I could not pick up the pace too much for the finish.

After a few glasses of water I laid on the floor and then eventually went to take a shower. My skin was so pruney from being wet for over three hours but what was worse was the amount of chaffing that occurred from my clothes being soaking wet for that amount of time. My waste line and inner thighs were all torn up. I did use some Body Glide on my upper inner thighs but it didn't stand up to all the rain.

I also got my first black toenail of this training cycle. I consider this run a a success. I like running in the rain but this was the most insane amount of rain I have ever run in. If I can run 19.3 miles in that storm then it is going to take more than a hurricane to stop me from finishing Maine!

1 comment:

  1. way to get it done! and yaaaaaay for black toenails hehe :)