(Before I get started, just wanted to say I'll have a full recap of the Hurricane Bill swell up in the next day. Got some great pictures and I need a little more time to get them organized and posted with my recap so for now... the story of my first 11-miler)
Apparently, everyone in the running world talks about the Boston Marathon like surfers talk about Pipeline (Hawaii) or Teahupoo (Tahiti). It's the Marathon to judge all other marathons and just qualifying for it is HUGE! I recently realized this after reading one of my friend Redhead Running's blogs or one of her friend's blogs; I can't remember which, and also while out on a really FUN date recently with "MyrtleMaude," whom is experienced in the ways of the marathon. ;-)
With that in my head (and never ever EVER having any desire to try and qualify for it) I saw a road named Boston Avenue while plotting out my scheduled 11-mile run for this weekend on MapMyRun.com. Boston Avenue is almost exactly the halfway point and near the southern end (one block away) of Riverside Drive (a scenic riverfront road that runs between New Smyrna Beach and Edgewater, Florida). What a perfect place to have a turn around? Plus, as I was mapping it out a friend sent me an IM saying he is moving to Boston. Could this be a sign? I'd say so... Boston Avenue it is! And how cool is it to say I ran Riverside Drive... ALL OF IT... TWICE!
Now I didn't get a chance to do my long run neither Saturday nor Sunday because of some amazing swell conditions. Yes, I was surfing (6-hours on Saturday and 5-hours on Sunday). That being said, my upper body is extremely fatigued. I have a few USIs (un-identified surfing injuries) consisting mostly of random bruises that I know not how I got them due most likely to addrieneline prohibiting me to feel pain at the time of said bruise*. And as of Sunday night I was a little sleep deprived. I did my best to carb load with some Mexican food (lots of rice) from Clancey's and a couple of Yuengling largers the night before (not smart, but it seemed like a good idea at the time).
This morning at 4:45 a.m. all of my alarms I had set sounded. I seriously questioned my sanity, but something deep inside pushed me to get up and get ready. Why is it that the earlier I get up for these long runs, the longer it takes me to get ready??? I mean, I get up at 7 a.m. for a short run and I'm out the door in less than 10 minutes. I get up at 4:45 a.m. and it takes me 45 minutes to pull myself together and start and I don't even drink coffee or anything!
At 5:30 a.m. I'm out the door and it's Boston Avenue or bust! It's super dark and amazingly quiet. I can see lots of stars in the sky. I love living in a small beach town with little light pollution and noise pollution! As I do more of these early morning long runs I am coming to the conclusion that sprinklers are either my enemy or my friend. Early on in the run down a dark sidewalk I catch a sprinkler spray right in the face. Come on! I'm not even sweaty yet. It was like a silent intruder in the night. Or, perhaps I have the iPod turned up too much to hear the sprinkler. By the time I'm super hot, super thirsty and giving Bikram Yoga a run for its money with the sweat factor all the sprinkler systems are done for the day.
The first half of the run is fine. I'm feeling good. I start off slow and speed the pace up to around a 9 minute mile by my guess. I pass up the first water/restroom stop because, well, I'm not thirsty and I don't have to go. BAD DECISION. The next water stop about 45-50 minutes into the run is locked up. Yup, that refreshing water fountain is locked behind a door because it's too early. FAIL. I'm starting to wonder where the hell Boston Avenue is when I ask a walker. He doesn't have a clue. It didn't look this far on the map. Am I lost? Is there a garden hose nearby because I will full on rape it for water at this point! FINALLY, through my sweat-blurred vision I see the Boston Avenue sign. This also means there should be a park nearby with water. SUCCESS! It's the 1:15:00 mark. Can I just say that's way to effing long to go without water? I slam down a Cliff Gel and drink probably too much water and continue the what now seems to be extremely long run home. I question myself if my legs can make it and then I start to think how freaking long it's going to take to run an entire marathon. I get into a groove and zone out for a few miles, hit my final water stop (the one I originally passed up) and make the last two miles feeling pretty good and without walking.
Final time is 1:48:08.
That's a 9:48 average pace. A little on the slow side for me, but I'm officially blaming it on all the surfing this weekend and the beer and Mexican food! What matters is I ran 11-freaking-miles! That Half Marathon distance doesn't seem far at all now!
*Must remember to check surfboards later for dings caused by my body.