Sunday, February 5, 2012

The Rolling Hills

Saturday marked the day of the longest run to date, 16 miles. I pushed my speed on Friday and got a good pace going for 4 miles thinking this running thing was actually quite easy. Follow that with an early morning wake up for the run in Waltham at Healthpoint. Oh the memories of Healthpoint!

When I was a sophomore in college, I met a guy who was 2 or 3 years older than me living in Natick. The relationship was going strong, so we decided to take it up a notch and spend the summer living together in Waltham. We were still in that puppy love stage and living together was a blast. In fact, it was so much fun that one night we decided to throw a small dinner party on our spacious deck. Luck would have it that the porch was never securely fastened to the house and it collapsed. I ended up tearing my labrium in the fall and needed extensive PT. Living and working in Waltham at the time, the closest place to go with the best reputation was at Healthpoint. That place became like a second home and once PT was over, I hadn't gone back.

Video of Porch Collapse

Pulling into the parking lot Saturday morning was like returning to a good friend that you neglected for new cooler friends. Nothing had really changed in the place which was nice. The normal intro was given and away we went. Despite spending ample time at the gym, I had never turned left out of the parking lot as my life and job was to the right. Today we were to turn left. I plugged away down about a mile of nice hills thinking that I was flying. And then the amazingly beautiful rolling hills started. Vermont is filled with rolling hills and in my running of that race, I realized that was my favorite way to go. This course followed a similar path of not to steep hills. I was trucking along at a slow pace, but at a pace in which I was having a blast. The first water stop at 2.5 miles came faster than ever before. I stopped to chat and then hit up the next bit of the road to route 2 with a turnaround and back to the water stop. Running down the hills through Lincoln Center with an awesome volunteer crossing guard to the next water stop. Onwards to the next time I made contact with route 2 and back to the water stop. About a mile or so after that water stop, a teammate/coach came up behind me and told me I was limping and favoring one side. I felt no pain and was tempted to keep going the 3 miles back to the club, but his words rang true that there is no shame in bailing out as the season is still young. At about 13 miles in, I hit the next water stop and sadly defeated listened to him and asked for a ride back.

The act of quiting is not something I am good at and I was bummed for a bit. Then reality sunk in that if I was limping it meant something was up even if I wasn't really feeling it. I ended up making up a mile later on in the day just to eek out the mileage at 14 and felt good again. This is for sure a time of experiments in which I am learning a lot about listening to my body and knowing when to quit while I'm ahead!

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