Thursday, September 20, 2007

Chariots of Fur

On Saturday, Ryan got out of bed and started running at 4:30AM. Started running. He ran 12 miles, hard. As in, he ran faster than normal, not 12 miles is a hard distance to run. I'm training to run 13.1. For 6 months it's going to take me to train and he can choose to cut back to that distance and run it "hard." (And yes, all you dirty-minded people, I am chuckling at my choice of words)

I got about an hour later and stumbled into the bathroom to find a stick of BodyGlide waiting on the vanity for me. My man loves me. I got ready and headed over to school. I parked at a grocery store nearby and walked over to the town hall where the race chips were. I got mine, tied it onto my shoe and then was accosted by a student wanting to sell me raffle tickets. of course, I had a car key, a phone, and naught else. I texted Ryan to bring some monies with him.

I tried to stretch and not go crazy waiting for an hour. I ran into a few more of my kids who seemed pleasantly surprised to see me. Not too terrified by the running clothes and hairdo (ponytail, braided and tied at the bottom, folded over on itself and rubber-banded). Ryan showed up a little after that.

The little kids started their 1-mile race and we waited for most of them to finish. Some of the kids were really fast and then there were the teeny-tiny ones who needed some help staying focused. One tiny little be-ribboned girl was followed by her mom and then got to "run" the 5K in her stroller.

The 5K started a little after 8, which is still late for this time of year (i.e. HOT). I was a little surprised when the gun went off. Ryan ran slowly (for him), but faster than I'm used to. I was pushing and sweating, but kept my eyes on my heart-rate monitor. He kept making sure I was okay--encouraging but also making sure that I wasn't pushing myself too hard. (Is it wrong that I was thinking about what a good dad he would be if he treats me with this kind of care?)

It is different to run a "race" than just a training run. Two weeks ago we ran 6 miles and just over 3 that day seemed harder. Like I said, I ran faster than normal, but still. Pacing is harder as is dealing with adrenaline rushes at the beginning and when people are cheering for you.

At one point, a whole gaggle of girls and another teacher were on the sidelines cheering, "Yay, Ms. T!" And "That's my English teacher!" I didn't realize it, but I started running harder after that, thanks to feeling all good. I told Ryan, "I love my job!" We were running near a couple and their double-running stroller full up of two tiny cherubs. Then I looked down at my watch, noticed the ridiculously, almost dangerously high heart rate and exclaimed, in a loud tone, "SH!T!"
Did I mention the cherubs to our left? Did I mention the part where about 10 teenage girls hd just shrieked that I was a teacher at the high school? Bargleflickle! I slapped my hand over my mouth and apologized.

I did fairly well, although there was more walking than I would have liked. But we still made something like 12.5 minute miles. As we rounded the last corner and were within sight of the finish line, Ryan said to go ahead and push out everything I had left. After all, I was almost done and then I'd be DONE. No more running. Just delicious croissants and naps.

So, I pushed it all out and run with just about everything I had left. Turns out, I found my limit. Anyone remember that I have asthma? That I spent 6 months doing cardio and swimming to prepare for running? Well, this genius forgot about that. About three steps before the finish I started wheezing. Seriously. Two breaths that didn't quite catch all the air. Luckily, I got over the finish line, got my chip cut off my shoe, caught my breath and got a huge hug from my husband.

We went over to the after-party and ran into a few more of my students and of course I introduced Ryan. He ran into a friend of ours and we all chatted until our stomach rumbling got so loud it was hard to talk over it. We walked past the kids with their ice-cream and managed not to snatch any away from them. Just as we were almost clear, we saw the banana table. I am repulsed by bananas because of their texture. I've been known to eat them so green they made me sick just to keep from gagging at the mushiness. Well, after running, I thought I'd never seen anything more appealing, nearly shouted, "Out of my way, bitches!" on my way over to grab the closest one and tore it open and well, you get the idea. Hmm, craving potassium, much?

Just as we were leaving, we saw the principal and I was going to drag Ryan over but figured I'd do it another time when we were both moderately clean. I know we got lots of brownie points for doing it. And the kids really respected me for running. They were even kind about the fact that I didn't really care about my time--just finishing.

So, I have my first 5K under my belt and I found some of my limits. It's kind of nice to know. Experience and all that. And regarding my asthma I was saying to Ryan that a year ago I could barely run up a flight of stairs without wheezing. I started working out back in January and then after 6 months of that I was actually able to run outside. Two months later, I'm still really slow, but I'm healthier and that's what it's about, right?

After the race, we met at La Madeline for a delicious breakfast and then fell into bed. I was too excited to sleep right away, but I enjoyed the rest and the cuddling. And chuckled that I ran a 5K, went out for a leisurely breakfast and was back in bed BEFORE I used to even think about waking up.

So, that was Saturday. This week was progress reports and grading 38,000 papers so I got home too late to run this week. I wasn't about to run in the dark or go to the club and park in the dark garage. (I think they film Lifetime TV movies in that garage)

Tonight I could barely manage 25 minutes without walking about 24 of them. My legs HURT. Burning. It took me an embarrassingly long time to figure out that it was my lower legs--front particularly. Whatever muscle(s) that is. Sort of like you've been standing on tip-toes all day. Or maybe, standing in HEELS. Curses! I knew this was going to happen. No more cute heels at school. I need to put pillowy insoles into my cute flats. Oh, and maybe buy more. You know, as an investment in my running. Not to mention some new running shoes as an investment in my running?

So, I took Tilly for a walk around the block and she tried to tear my arm out of its socket. Darn harness sucks for controlling her. She was jerking so much I was hoping she wasn't going to hurt herself again. Sigh. I'm going to be hating life on Saturday morning when we run 7 miles. Once again, one step forward, two steps back. Or maybe just stepbacks happen.


Kelli in the Mirror said...

I am so proud of you! That's awesome.

And I had no idea you were repulsed by bananas also, why did I not know that? :)

shoeaddict said...

You are my hero!!

Tim said...

Awesome job! 12 minute miles are great.

Lainey-Paney said...

I'm so proud of you! I could so never do that. I don't think I have the ability to commit to that kind of physical prep regimen. I am just so proud that you did it!

oh, and what's body glide? Cuz I gotta tell ya---when I first read that, I thought: "oh, he left a bottle of lube out for her..." yeah, how sweet.