Friday, March 12, 2010

Deja Vu?

I think when you start running you become a junior meteorologist. Checking,, the Weather Channel (which is the same as but you never know if Jim Cantore will say something undisclosed on TV) and Lansing's 11 o'clock news with Andy Pro. You study the Doppler radar like nobody's business and pour over precip percentages and wind direction variables with conviction. Finally, you go with the prediction that suits you and your run best. If says only a 20% chance of rain and the local guy says "definitely rain", well I'm sticking with the weather experts online. What does that local guy know anyway?

It brings me back to a memorable race our group did back in August. The night before we all poured (get it!) over weather reports and none were changing: Rain was imminent for our Mint City 10 mile race in St. John's the next morning. I went to sleep wishing the rain away and woke up to a hammering of water against my bedroom window. So much for wishing. Since this was the beginning of my long distance running stint, I didn't have any fancy rain gear. So thanks to my ingenious husband (brownie points), I grabbed a garbage bag at the last minute. I loved that garbage bag.

The drive to the race was silent (pretty rare for our gaggle of women) as we watched the wind howl, the rain pour down and the sky get darker. The race got delayed a couple of times (due to the cracks of lightening within arms reach from the start) and as we waited, sheltered in the middle school gym, we wondered what the heck we were doing there. And I secretly wished they would cancel the race altogether.
"Pre-race, pre-garbage bag wearing"

l-r Deb, Abby, Peg, Lisa, Sara, me, Danielle, Jenny

But, they didn't. Again, so much for wishing (my fairy godmother must have been busy). So, clad in our Hefty specials, we lined at the start and took off. By the end of the first mile my feet were sloshing in my Saucanys, my ear buds for my Ipod were wet (causing whoever was crooning in my ears to sound like they were underwater), and my hat was soaked through. But, thanks to my black garbage bag of love, my body remained dry and somewhat warm. At that point Sara (who I was running with) and I sort of embraced the weather. We got pelted with rain, heard rumbles of thunder, saw lightening on the horizon, and I swear got hit with some hail at one point and just kept on running, like little Forrest Gumps. We couldn't believe when we hit mile 5...halfway though and we still had the trash bags on our bodies. We shed our protective cocoons and I swear it made us go a little faster. Never in my life did I feel as hard core as I did that day.

We all finished the race, believe it or not, with smiles on our faces. For me, it was the longest race I had ever done. But as I scarfed down post race cookies, bananas and bagels, with my sopping clothes hanging on me, it wasn't about the 10 miles I just ran. I knew I could do that. It was completing 10 miles in a continuous (seriously, it never stopped) torrential downpour-something I would have NEVER done.

Post-race...all smiles (albeit soaked-check out my shorts)

l-r Me, Danielle, Sara (nice towel skirt), Abby, Lisa, Peg and Deb

So that walk down memory lane is because our long run is today and all week the weather people were predicting rain. Our run happens to be another 10 miler. We studied the maps, listened intently to the news reports, going back and forth deciding on what time of day would be best. Or would we be stuck inside on a treadmill? But we settled on just running as planned, outside in the afternoon. Please. If we could endure last year's storm, we can get through a little sprinkle. Besides, now we have fancier rain-wear instead of Hefty specials ;o)

1 comment:

  1. Oh my gosh Kim, I felt like I was reliving our 10 miler. But you summed it up great! I was so proud of us that day, certainly a test to the determination of our running group!