First. I implore you all to listen to this song as you read this entry:
I am seeing Yukon Blonde next Friday night in celebration of my 31st year living amongst all of you lovers and lunatics, and in preparation, I’ve had this tune on mega replay.
I hope you enjoy.
Today I was meaning to venture back to Buntzen Lake (land of lost toenails and forgotten sandwiches), and run 24 kilometers. However, when I awoke this morning my heart was feeling a little heavy, and the sky outside was hanging so terribly low. Knowing that this malaise would not bode well for an incredibly long and tough training session on unfamiliar terrain, I thought instead to keep to a route I have completed many times prior.
There would be nothing wrong with saving the trails for another day.
When I set out to run the 19 kilometer loop from my house (I run to Edmonds Skytrain, across the Queensborough Bridge, down the Quay and home), the temperature read 3 degrees, and it was raining.
Everything about this was manageable. I love long runs in the rain, and like I wrote previously, I am trying to acclimatize myself to running in colder temperatures.
This would be good practice, and thus, I forwent a toque and gloves.
The first indication that I might have misjudged my need for these accoutrements, was about two kilometers into the route when it really started to rain.
I kept imagining the raindrops to be infinitesimal water balloons exploding on my face the moment they made contact with my skin. There were even a few times when I questioned whether or not I was actually crying, because I could feel so many of them sliding down from the corner of my eyes, along my cheeks, and into the crooks of my ears.
(They were also really, really cold.)
The iciness of the rain was augmented by the strong, driving wind. Depending on the direction I was running, it would whip up against my long sleeve shirt and press the soaked fabric hard against my skin. I kept cramming my thumbs into my fists in an attempt to mute some of the frosty sting that had settled into both digits.
Yet despite all of this (or perhaps even because of this), I actually had a run that was absolutely out of this world.
It didn’t matter that I got sprayed by semi trucks whilst running over the bridge, or that I had “Tunnel Vision” by Tokyo Police Club stuck in my head for the entirety of the run.
I felt fantastic. I felt like I was flying.
(Quick aside and question for all runners reading this: Do you ever get to a place where you sing the same four bars of music over and over again for the entire length of a run? It is a constant in my training life.)
Truly, the only slightly unfortunate thing about the entire experience was when I arrived home and I caught sight of myself in the bathroom mirror.
Suffice to say that I looked FUCKING CRAZY.
Before I left, I had parted my hair down the middle and then braided it down the length of my back, and tucked my (now grown out) bangs behind my ears. However, between the wind, rain, and general propulsion of my body for 19 kilometers, they had matted and tangled themselves into some sort of insane halo-birds nest mashed atop the crown of my head.
This. This is not a good look.
Marc told me that he hadn’t wanted to say anything due to my elation at the success of the run.
“But yeah,” he said. “You looked totally nuts.”
In the end, I ran 19.3 km in approximately 1:20. I’m chalking this up to my first week of two-a-days, my insatiable craving for Ms. Vickie’s salt-and-vinegar chips, and Yukon Blonde.
Because, after all, it is Saturday night.