Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Mother Nature and more miles

Ran about 30 miles Monday. Put down 25-26 in the morning...on my feet for 4.5 hours in the CB State Park. Started the run a little past 7am as the sun crept up the eastern horizon back out over the ocean...threatening to turn everything in its wake into one sweltering steamy jungle-like cauldron. Fortunately I caught a break as it clouded over an hour or so into the run. Tried tying a hydration belt around my waist that I had bought at Walmart the night before, but quickly discarded due to discomfiture. Had a cooler in my car filled with power aide, clif bars. sports beans, and 2 turkey sandwiches.

Physically I was pleasantly surprised that my legs weren't too thrashed from Saturdays 4+ mile cross country race and 6 hours of driving on Sunday. The race pitted the Wilmington Road Runners against our brethren to the south the Grand Strand Road Runners, and was held at Indigo Farms. The course was muddy/ grassy rutted roads around produce fields and some wider trails thru the woods. I joked early on to some fellow competitors that there should be steeplechase hurdles to jump over the huge puddles. But was one of the most fun, challenging races I've done in a long time.. and I helped my club win back the trophy.

But despite that and the drive time in the car I got in what I set out to accomplish Monday. The sun did come back out in the last hour, and combined with the high humidity made conditions almost intolerable. Near the end on one of the trails I saw several turkey vultures...had to almost laugh out loud at my black thoughts that they were waiting for me to drop dead. I thought of Kipling when I had a minute left to go: "If you can fill the unforgiving minute with sixty seconds' worth of distance run-  Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it. And-which is more-you'll be a Man, my son!"

Later in the afternoon back in the state park for a few more miles as a thunderstorm brewed just to the west and south across the Cape Fear River. Was virtually an unbroken and eerily menacing rumble of thunder as I bound swiftly up and down the wooded trails. The breeze picked up and was almost cool to the touch on my skin... the rumbles and booms grew steadily louder and I knew my time was preciously waning...big rain drops started to fall from the purple grey sky. Then I could see the lightning as thunder cracked a few seconds later echoing like a thousand bass drums thru the woods which swayed back and forth to the whims of the storm's increasing winds.

Another 10 miles Tuesday morning. Met a guy on bike from Pittsburgh who was vacationing here. Rode a few miles with me as I ran the trails. We chatted pleasantly about the area and things back home in PA.

We all just keep on moving. Pursuing our crafts. Enjoying the ride.