And no, this post is not about the George Burns/Charlie Schlatter “body switching” Freaky Friday wannabe flick from the 80s. I’ll wait while you check out IMDB to see if this movie actually exists or if I’m just making this crap up.
Anyway, yesterday I talked about doing my first “solo” long run (17-18 mile) of 2014 and few of my trepidations.
17 or 18 miles, what was it going to be?
Well, for those of you wondering (and if you were truly wondering, thank you, but you really should consider a different hobby), today was indeed an 18-mile jaunt around Burbank and in Griffith Park.
Hence the “18 again” title for this post.
But it actually has a double meaning because, indeed during this run I felt “18 again” for a large portion of the run.
I arrived at Griffith Park around 7:30am this morning. Yup, missed that 7:05am prediction from yesterday (but then again if you see my March Madness brackets you’d know predictions are apparently not my strong suit).
I parked in my favorite little lot, locked up the SUV, did my quick “stretchies” and thought about the route I’d run…
- 4.5 miles out and back through Burbank.
- Loop back to do 8 miles along the river running/biking path.
- Pitstop at the car at 12.5 miles to grab water for the final push.
- 5.5 mile loop around Griffith Park running past the zoo, the golf course, up “HFS hill”, past Travel Town and ending up back at the auto.
Well, no sooner had I gotten out of Griffith Park did I decide to toss that plan out the window and improvise it a little. Some “running jazz,” if you will.
Why? Because I felt good. Real damn good. Like “I have no business feeling this good” good.
It’s been less than two weeks since the LA Marathon and I’m still a good week away from fully recovering from that race (“1 day per mile run” rule), but I figured I push it a bit (I know, big surprise).
So I ended up spending 12.5 miles running through Burbank, including a trip along the Chandler Bike/Running Path and ditched the river entirely. By the time I got back to my car to refuel I was right at a 10:00 mile/pace.
And my pitstop at my SUV would have impressed most NASCAR pit crews. I used my electronic key to unlock my Murano as I approached. I whipped open the rear gate, lobbing my 4 spent water bottles in the back, quickly snapped two fresh filled ones onto my belt, slammed the gate and I was off. I didn’t even need to change any tires or adjust my rear end… okay, maybe I did do a quick tug on the shorts to make certain they weren’t creeping up into “no man’s land.”
Around mile 15 fatigue did start setting in a bit (told you I wasn’t 100% recovered) and the temp was climbing, but I was in the homestretch. Only one obstacle remained.
Now I don’t know if this hill has an official name, but in the T2 circles we have christened it with a moniker… “Holy F#$#ing Sh!t Hill.”
Yeah, she’s kind of a bitch.
Fortunately, what she takes away she also does give back in kind. Half a mile climb and half a mile descent. Fair trade, right?
She was in rare form today, and coupled with my screaming calves at this point, she did take it out of me. But often the best gains come from pushing yourself when things aren’t “Hunky” or “Dory.”
And boy there is nothing like cresting a mini-mountain, knowing it’s all downhill (literally) from there. And “HFS Hill” even has an “X” right at the apex so you know you are indeed over the proverbial hump.
A few more intervals and I was back at the SUV, feeling a little worse for wear but indeed a good run and knowing that I am still in marathon shape and ready to give another go at the 5-hour barrier come May.
So next weekend is a short taper run of 8-miles or so as I get ready for the Hollywood Half Marathon and another trip down the “Avenue of Stars” on April 5th.
Oh, and as an added bonus tonight I’ve got the wedding reception for one of my good running buddies, Stacey, and there will be several Team Roadkill runners in attendance (and dressed up for a change). Should be a really fun time.
“Say Goodnight Gracie” (Needed to have a George Burns call back).