This morning I set out for what I hoped was to be my first 20 mile run. I was pretty confident that I could do 20 miles since it was below 70 and overcast when I set out shortly after 8am. After about 5 minutes the sun came out.
The sun beat down on me and drained me of energy. I still felt pretty good because it wasn’t too hot and I hadn’t been out for too long. I knew I could at least make 13 miles. I didn’t see much new debris by the roadside but I have finally come up with an explanation for the pink towel, the diaper, the numerous cheap beer containers, and endless cigarette butts and packs. The explanation is Lil’ Smokey. Lil’ Smokey is a baby. At night, when his parents think that he is sleeping (he’s a very heavy sleeper, his parents love him for that) he sneaks out. He wears a pink towel for a cape and prowls the streets of Chili and Churchville drinking cheap beer and smoking cigarettes. Lil’ Smokey is either a super hero or a mutant. The beer and cigarettes actually make him stronger which of course doesn’t make sense.
I’m not sure who he’s protecting but he’s protecting someone or something. I know I could have used his protection from the evil Bugmes. The Bugmes are a gang of bugs that fly around your head and bite you when you are running. If only I’d been running at night maybe Lil Smokey could have helped me.
It looks like Lil Smokey got into some trouble recently. I found a pile of copper wire on the shoulder of the road in close proximity to a Red Bull can. Obviously Lil Smokey was aprehended by Mr. Green, an evil frog. Mr. Green bound Lil Smokey with the wire but somehow Lil Smokey got Red Bull and was able to free himself. Mr. Green didn’t fare too well in the ordeal. He’s lying face up and he’s pretty dried up by now. Lil Smokey doesn’t take any crap.
Although it might seem that I was hallucinating during this run I was not. The sun made things very difficult but I pressed on. I arrived at the 6.5 mile point where my biggest fan (my Mom) was waiting with water and candy. I drank a LOT of water and had some candy and continued on. I was still hoping to complete 20 miles but decided against running the Rowe Quarter three times. The Rowe Quarter has NO shade in the morning. My Mom radioed (cell phone) back to home base to inform Mary that the battery died in my portable music player. Mary, sensing extreme danger, sprang into action. She found near the end of the hills on the Rowe Quarter. She came fortified with water, a gel pack, a replacement music player, and fresh batteries. I drank some water and took the replacement music player. I passed on the gel pack as I was saving it for mile 13. I was very grateful that Mary came out with these “power ups” because I wasn’t expecting them until mile 13.
So my run continued. I forgot to mention that the sun hid behind some clouds shortly after I left mile marker 6.5. It was fantastic running with out the sun on my back (figuratively and literally). It wasn’t to be however as the sun returned to sap me of my energy.
I made it to mile 13 (back to my house) where Mary had water and the gel pack for me. I drank lots of water and ate the gel. I was still hoping to complete 7 more miles even though the sun was killing me by that point. I had run the 13 miles in about 2:12 or so. I ran the first 6.5 in 1:04. The sun was really starting to take a toll. I decided to run the 3.0 mile loop and then the 2.0 mile loop twice.
There wasn’t much shade in the first part of the 3.0 mile loop. I ended up taking significant walk breaks. I was still hoping to get 20 miles. I passed a girl I’ve seen running in the area a couple of times. She waved as she has in the past. It was nice to see another runner. It gave me some energy to keep going. It wasn’t enough energy though.
It was now getting close to 11 am and I still have 5 miles to go. While the loops have more shade than the Rowe Quarter there still isn’t much shade. I was walking a lot. I made the decision to stop after 16 miles. It just didn’t make sense to continue. I was spending a lot of time walking and I was out with no sun block. If I stayed out in the sun in the 11 am hour I would surely be faced with an extreme sunburn.
I rounded the corner and picked up speed. I could see the mailbox. I passed the mailbox 2 hours 49 minutes, and 14 seconds and 16 miles from when I began.
This will be my last long run until after the Boilermaker. I’ll continue my long runs after the Boilermaker in preparation for the Rochester Half Marathon. I’m running the Rochester Half Marathon to get a starting time for the 2007 Walt Disney World Marathon.