My Sort-of Running Partner April 22, 2012Posted by KG in Uncategorized.
This morning I rolled out of bed at 0515, to a preplanned alarm song (“Juicy,” Notorious B.I.G.) designed to get me up and moving. I puttered around for a bit before, in a pique of panic, I realized I was running late for the Parkway Classic, a race I had been planning to run for months. It’s a point-to-point course from Mt. Vernon to Old Town Alexandria that shuts down the GW Parkway. Logistics are… complex. My wife, angel that she is, had agreed to assist by providing a ride to the start and then waiting for me to finish. What she didn’t realize: that I’d wake her in a fit at 0600, dragging her in to my pre-race nervousness.
This isn’t the first time I’ve dragged her out of bed to got to a race with me. In fact, it’s becoming a regular thing. Weekend mornings are normally for her time to sleep in, but lately, about once a month, she’s sacrificed that to come with me, via Metro or car, and watch me run. During the races I understand she finds the nearest coffee shop and communes with the other “race widow[er]s.” Oddly, she tells me these are mostly women. I think they should start a club.
I could do this by myself, and have offered. But she’s soldiered forth, not taking me up. And thus has given me some serious support on the race course. “My wife woke up for this,” I think, often halfway through when my mental energies are flagging. “Can’t slow down now.” She finds me at the finish, where I offer her a hug she declines.
“You smell!” she says.
So she’s not all angel. Which is just how I like it. The bit of a laugh at the end of the run is a nice way to start the rest of our post-race mornings: a banana, a bottle of water, a much needed shower, brunch. And a nap.
(And I got to the start with plenty of time. The Parkway Classic was a great experience. The GW Parkway is a really hard surface, and it was a big crowd, but once it thinned and I could really run, I settled in to a serious groove. I didn’t train as hard as I did way back when for the 2008 Cherry Blossom 10 miler, but managed to run the race I wanted to run. Slow to start, steady pace, and then all out to the finish. Four years, about 15 pounds, and one back surgery later, I beat my 2008 Cherry Blossom time by seven seconds.)