Two Down
Sunday, July 19, 2015

Not one of my banner days running that’s for sure.  But given the circumstances surrounding this particular run, I suppose I have to realize that it is what it is (or was) and just move on.  After umpiring three baseball games in stifling heat and humidity yesterday I had two on my schedule for today, along with an 8-mile run on my Runner’s World training schedule.  As I awoke this morning I was admittedly concerned with the weather forecast which was not predicted to be in my favor.  Temperatures were predicted to rise into the 90’s with a heat index over 100 and a dew point in the low 80’s.  Awful weather for taking a stroll to the mailbox, let alone being out on a run that would take about an hour followed by 4+ hours on a sun-soaked diamond.

Embracing the suck, I dragged myself outside and started out on my run.  By the time I hit mile 2 I knew it was going to be difficult to get an 8-miler in under the conditions but I pressed on.  Just before the second mile I snapped this photo.  Note the temperature on the Dove Pointe time and temperature display.

 7_19 HOT

By the time I rolled past mile 3 I began to question whether or not it was a good idea to go the entire distance.  It wasn’t about embracing the suck at that point, it was about making sure I was able to survive the run plus the games later in the day.  By the time I hit 4 miles I had spent myself and didn’t want to finish the run at all. Shortly after that I stopped to take a break under the little bit of shade I could find along the side of the road.  I’m certain that I had sweat as bad as I was on this day, but I had a hard time remembering when it was a profuse as this sweat was.  It was literally running off of me and pooling on the ground.  After a few minutes I began to run again and by the time I closed in on mile 5 I knew that I would cut the run short to 5 miles and walk the rest of the way home.  I was able to re-route myself to keep the walk to approximately 1-mile which I thought could be a good “cool down”.  But before I finished the fifth mile I did something I never thought I would do in a million years.  I took my shirt off.  Not that I have anything against runners who run shirtless, but it’s just not something I would do normally.

As I dragged on toward what would be my shortened finish my shirt became so sweat soaked that it felt heavy and constricting. I became so miserable and overheated that I wanted to shed any piece of clothing I had on at that moment and I removed my shirt.  At that very moment, I became shirtless!  I laughed because I have always said I would never do it, but desperate times called for desperate measures.  I thought to myself, “I’ve become one of them.”  But honestly I didn’t care.  I’m not sure it made a whole lot of difference but given the temperatures any little bit made a difference.  Shamelessly I walked back to the house feeling defeated by mother nature but I lived to see another day.  I will add a few miles to my run tomorrow.  Given my experience with marathon training I realize that a few miles on this day will not make or break me in October.  Best to put it behind me, hope for falling temperatures and have a better run tomorrow.

Interestingly, on my way to work my games (which I survived and embrace the suck, thank you very much) I saw something I see from time to time.  Living on the Eastern Shore I often see Osprey who live near the Wicomico River who are great fishermen.  It’s not the greatest photo and I didn’t see this on my run, but I thought it was cool enough to share here.  Below is an Osprey who just snagged a fish from the river and was flying it home to its nest, most likely feeding little ones.  Pretty cool, even though it was hot.

Osprey Lunch

As for the games, I said “two down” several dozen times today when there were two outs in the inning.  But it also had a different meaning for today.  Today marked the end of week #2 of training.  So two down, and fourteen to go.

Run on…