Practice today at 10am .... nothing like getting a text from your coach at 6am telling you to dress appropriately for the impending storm expected to hit partially through practice ... I still haven't warmed up from the ride/run with him from several days ago .... fun, I can't wait ... BUT at least distances were modified and shortened ... only 6 for me today!! Yay!!
Teammates showed up in full force minus a few lucky souls ... one being my favorite running partner who so luckily is enjoying her spring vacation in Florida! Don't I wish I was so lucky ... warm weather, beaches, hot sun .... okay enough ... reality ... cold, dreary, raining New England Spring - the humid heat will be here soon enough ... we like the extremes ... no walking the middle ground in this place. New uniforms were distributed! Team pow wow explaining the course and detailing the various runs ... from 8 miles down ... whew, 6 for me along with the twins ... out and back 2x .... "Hills?" I ask (my IT hates down hill!) .... "some long inclines with one small steep climb" is the response .... great! And off we go ... just as the rain starts ... we start as a group of 6 ... I just love the twins, they are amazing ... joking with the guy in the group ... nothing like a guy in sexy tights ... something only those that train in tights could appreciate .... speaking of tights, I spend more on my riding & running gear these days then I do on my "other" wardrobe ... so yeah, I do appreciate a nice pair of tights when I see one. Back to the twins ... they started running with EFS last year ... each has lost about 70 lbs ... they are game for anything ... competed in their first tri last year and are working towards their first half marathon this summer. They run side by side ... matching each other step by step in perfect rhythm as if they were one ... occasionally one will pull ahead of the other but never forgetting about the sister behind ... every few minutes calling out words of encouragement and support and never losing sight or step of each other ... not to mention the words of support they both have for the other team members as we cross paths doing our various and often diverse runs.
I finished the first 3 mile loop with the twins ... one thought the coach had dropped us down from 6 to 4 miles .... but no such luck ... he yelled "half way there" at the turn around so we knew we had one more loop to go ... just as the rain really started coming down. With streams of water rushing down the "inclines" and big puddles forming on the side of the road .... cars driving by without a touch to the break, splashing water on us ... we headed out for another 3 miles ... 1 1/2 out and another 1 1/2 back .... about 4 miles into the run I started feeling warmed up .... when I say I'm slow and steady, I'm not joking .... takes me 3-4 miles just to warm up .... it's always the same thing ... thoughts running through my head, arguing with myself ... "I can't do this ... yes I can," "what the hell am I doing?" "I'm so slow, fast walkers could pass me at this rate" and yes, "I could be in bed right now or eating a pancake breakfast somewhere warm & dry!" ... not to mention a few things I wont repeat .... but after I hit that 3-4 mile mark, I find my second wind and I just want to go .... I can't say I'm any faster but the evil thoughts go away and it just feels good and I want to keep running ... lately, when I get to that good point, my IT says "I'm done" and my mind and body lose their partnership as my muscles slowly rebel .... very frustrating BUT today .... that didn't happen ... my legs and mind were ready for more when I hit the 6 mile mark ... if it wasn't for the freezing rain and 10lbs of wet clothes covering my body, I would have kept going ... I know I'm never going to win any races ... maybe one day, if I keep running long enough, I will eventually reach an age group I can win ... 60 maybe? I can hope ... but in the meantime ... I'll just keep running! My coach says I have what it takes to do the ultra stuff ... we'll see ... I will be talking to him soon to set some goals and just see where I can go and what I can do ... my passion is mountain biking but I'm learning to love running just as much ... one day at a time.
Photos: 1) handing out uniforms; 2) me & the twins; 3) Coach Jay; 4) Team photo after the run.