Your comments are one of the best parts of writing this column. Thanks to all y’all for sharing your own belly thoughts, even if they aren’t specifically about your belly. Even BAMRs struggle with body image and it’s always reassuring to know that strong women can also feel all of their feelings.
In other news, it’s still so flipping hot here I don’t know what to do with myself. On the Wednesday after Labor Day (and the day my kids were finally back in school), it was in the low 90s. Given that nothing around here is air conditioned, I’m am sure the middle and high schools smelled absolutely delightful. Teen Spirit will not be the next best-selling fragrance from Jean Nate.
I thought I’d be OK for my last long run before my goal half marathon, which is in Corning next weekend. I had 14 miles on my document (to quote one Kara Goucher) two Saturdays ago. On my weather app, the temps were going to be in the low 70s in the morning. A little warm, I thought, but manageable.
What I failed to anticipate was the humidity. Despite living here for 15+ years at this point, I can’t seem to remember that northeastern air holds onto moisture like my 13-year old holds on to his Nintendo Switch. The last couple of miles of those 14 had a definite Night of the Living Dead quality to them but I managed to get back home with all of my limbs attached and had cleared my schedule enough to catch a nice nap. #winning
The runs that remain before Wineglass have been and are a mix of easy miles and race pace miles. Easy miles are my bread-and-butter. Nothing makes me happier. I can lallygag like nobody’s business, even when the weather makes it feel more like a swim than a run.
Even the race pace miles — my race pace is 11:20 — are going well. Right now, my biggest challenge has been to not run them too fast. Just because I can turn out a 10:45 mile in the middle of a four mile run doesn’t mean that I should. While I know that intellectually and accept that these RP miles are there to get my body to figure out how to find that pace, I still want to show off on Strava and to my coach. Brains are weird.
Because of those RP miles feel a little challenging but mostly good, I have decent hopes that this Wineglass will finally be the one where I break 2:30. The odds are in my favor:
- I have run some version of this same course three times and know where the hard bits are.
- AMR doesn’t have a table at the Expo this year (long story) and I can spend Saturday afternoon lounging around with my feet up.
- I’m starting to get the hang of half-marathons and know that starting too fast is my bete noir. My goal for the first five miles is to mosey with a purpose, no matter how zippy I feel.
I’ll practice a completely chill version of my mosey at the 5K the morning before. I was going to skip it — but couldn’t resist the spinny medal and commemorative plate. It appears that I choose races based totally on the swag.
As much as I complain about our weather, I know that we’ve got it easy right now. One of the benefits of living where I do is that hurricanes aren’t much of a worry. I’ll take our bleak Februarys and Marches over feet of rain and angry wind any given day of the week. (If someone could remind me of this in March, however, I’d appreciate it.)
Hurricane Florence blew Ariel, a BAMR friend made at the Little Rock retreat a few years ago, up to my house in Oneonta for a couple of days last weekend. While her house in North Carolina wasn’t likely to flood or get blown over, the high pressure system always triggers her worst asthma attacks. Since she decided it would be better to not wind up in the hospital for something avoidable, I offered up our guest room.
I’d love to say that we went on long, soul-searching runs together. We didn’t. She’s Zippy McQuickerson; I am not. It would be frustrating for us both. However, we did have lots of time to talk and not-talk and generally rest and relax. While the overall reason for her trip wasn’t ideal, the time was nice to have together.
I hope all of the BAMRs who were in Flo’s path are safe and dry. And, hopefully, able to get out for a run.