Today was a Friday unlike any other Friday. It was the eve before the wine tour; the first wine tour of my life that would prevent me from running with the Team in Training tomorrow morning out in Cazenovia; it was the Friday where I would be pulled over and not receive a ticket. Now that is a funnier story than the Vaseline story. I had to run the 16 and Nick decided to run it with me.
He and I decided to meet at Baker High School in Baldwinsville and begin our trek up Oneida St to Budweiser Highway, aka 631, then down 370 to John Glen Blvd., and over to 57, back up to 31 and back to the high school. Darkness fell upon us while running 370. Aside from the headlights of the cars passing by at speeds which I'd rather forget, the darkness was blinding. The stars shone bright. What an awesome evening to run. The breeze was light and the air was cool. I remember saying to Nick, "It would have been a crime to not run tonight."
We didn't see any living wildlife on tonight's run like we saw last weekend. Last weekend showed us a coyote crossing the street about 100 feet in front of us; a cat that ran like a rabbit then darted into the woods, probably to be eaten by the coyote, and countless birds migrating south except for the beautiful Cardinal that landed on a branch to our left while approaching Horseshoe Island. No, tonight we smelled the aroma of a dead skunk, cow manure (which penetrated the nostrils and would not leave), and the scent of stagnant water among the brush of Onondaga Lake Park.
Once we reached route 57, Nick took his GU. This was just beyond halfway. At mile 10 I took some GU when Nick uttered the phrase, "I feel strong..." Memories from last week's run came back to me when he said those words and gained agreement from me until mile 12 where we both started to fade, and our dreams of planning a 4 hour marathon at Disney also began to fade. Yet tonight would be different. Tonight we would not fade. Tonight we would demonstrate to ourselves that we could achieve the impossible, a 4 hour marathon. We ran well. We ran fast, for us anyway. Until... until I fell on the edge of route 31. Like a good mentor, I carried the Gatorade on my belt and fell while putting Nick's bottle onto my belt. I slipped off the lip, twisted my ankle and landed on the rocky street. Thank goodness it was dark because I didn't realize the large amount of blood that drained down my leg from my knee until I got home. I bled so much that blood splattered onto my left leg, dripped onto my clean, white Adidas running shoes, and stained my socks on both feet. I sit here now, on my bed typing this story with a torn up right knee and a couple of band aids.
Normally I may feel the pain, but not on this day. I picked myself off the street; well, not exactly, Nick picked me up off the street. Nick watched me hobble a little while. Then we ran. We finished the run. Last week's run saw two tired runners. This night saw two motivated runners with a goal. To run 16 miles with in 2.5 hours. We did it. We pushed the limits of physics as we dashed down the gradual slope of Oneida street to Baker High School. It was 16 miles according to my premapped run. Yet, according to Nick's Nike Sports Band it was 17.4 miles or something. I will never live this down.
What is the secret to running without pain? Its easy. Lots of Bio-Freeze, compression shorts, and 800 Motrin. That is the recipe for successful pain free running. I still feel nothing. Tomorrow, I will feel nothing when the pain hits me since "red, red wine makes me feel so fine and keeps me rocking all of the time..."
So, I will see you on the road.