Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Hill Revenge

So, I got in a nice little 5-mile run today on a fairly hilly route with the running group.  Since we decided to do a little field trip from our normal coffee shop meeting place (to check out another cafe about a mile away), the question of routes came up.  However, P.D., one of the members of the group, kept saying he had a route planned out for us.  Don't worry, he had it covered.  Well, within the first half mile or so of the run, he had us heading down a long flight of stairs into this park, only to run up a nice, steep hill.  Before long, it became apparent that that was not going to be the only hill of the day.  In fact, you could say that hills became sort of the theme.  Hmmm, I can't help but wonder if the hills weren't for my benefit.  (Yes, in my mind, it IS all about me.)

You see, I happen to be in charge of our club's April fun run, "The Beer Run," and last year - to help set it apart from the other beer runs popping up - I asked P.D., also our club's maps guru, to map out a nice, challenging, hilly route for the 10K.  He did, and ever since I have felt the heat of that decision.  Mostly, it's tongue in cheek ... I think.  You see, I get teased a bit, because I don't actually RUN this fun run.  Some may feel that ordering up hills and then not running them is something akin to ordering up a round of Jaegermeister shots for everyone and then not partaking yourself (not that I've ever done that).  However, I am in charge of "hosting," and I take that responsibility seriously.  I feel it is important for someone to stay behind at the bar while everyone runs.  After all, someone needs to test the beer watch the sign in sheets, keep the bartender company, make sure the sign doesn't fall down, and direct any stragglers.  So, to some it may look like I am just sitting around, doing nothing but sipping beer, but really there is a lot of work involved.  After all, someone has to have a smile on their face when everyone gets done with the run.

And, anyway, for the most part, the folks who participate in the fun run like the challenge of the few hills (...eight...) that we have.  The ones who don't like the hills probably don't come.  (Maybe that is why our numbers went down from last year to this year?  Food for thought, I guess.)

In any case,  I can't help but wonder if P.D. didn't think this was a fun opportunity for me to put my money where my mouth was.... i.e., run some hills, since every spring I keep proclaiming how great they are.

So, it was a tough run.  Aside from the hills, I was way overdressed.  Leaving the house, it was 40 degrees and rainy.  Arriving for the run, the sun peeked out and it got warmer.  Suddenly, the thermal shirt, jacket, and insulated tights I had chosen seemed like a really poor choice.  Ah well.  I survived, had my coffee, and all was good.

In fact, generally, I thought the run went really well.  That said, though, I am happy that this week is the last big push week until taper.  I am ready to slack off rest a bit before my half marathon in May.  With any luck, taper will go well, and I will head into this race feeling better than I have in a long time.  I think the potential is there.  So fingers crossed; thinking cap on, so I don't do anything stupid in the next three weeks; and happy thoughts.

Happy Running!

By the way, a race report for the relay is still coming.  A relay is such a long event that for me (who writes too much anyway) to write something concise is proving to be a challenge.  It's coming, though!


  1. Hills! I made the mistake of telling my bro I wanted hills one day. Never again. I find it best just to let the hills work in naturally and not seek them out, though we live in a super hilly area where you can't avoid them.

    I agree about race recaps being hard to write (can only imagine an entire relay). There is just so much to say and not enough time or energy (for me) to say it. My hardest posts for sure!

    1. I think hills are kind of like big city traffic. If you live in a smaller town with no traffic, two people putzing through an intersection can drive your blood pressure up. Same with hills. If you live somewhere flat, any molehill of a bump in the road can seem like a mountain.

      In any case, after Pikes Peak last year, you would think the few measly hills we have around here wouldn't bother me - and mentally they don't. However, physically, I still feel like a bowl full of jelly trying to roll up them. I keep trying, though, hoping to get stronger. And, I am. Slowly. :)