As I so eloquently put it on Strava on Saturday after my long run, “90% humidity is just too much humidity.”
It’s too much moisture in the hot, hot air for running with any sense of purpose. The first mile was the best mile -- and given how crappy most first miles are, this should tell you how gross the next four miles were. I just keep reminding myself that I’m building mental strength when I run in the dead of summer (and the dead of winter). Soon, my brain will be able to bench press my car.
As it turns out, 90% humidity is also too much humidity for my very strong brain to find a good theme for this week’s column. No one wants to read 800 words about oppressive July days — besides, then we’d just get into a competition about whose weather is worse, even though we all know that mine is.
It’s just too steamy to think. Instead of a coherent and/or moving and/or funny column about this vocation we all share, all my distracted (but strong!) brain can offer are a few disconnected observations.
So many mother runners commented on my “Meaningful Miles” post about Heidi. Her last treatment (should the schedule hold) will be August 14. We’re noodling around with ideas for some kind of virtual group run but nothing has stuck yet. There’s still some time to pull something together, even if we are buying poster board and glitter the night before in true mother runner style.
Because I’m going to run a fast 5K on July 20, Coach put 4 30-second hard-as-you-can intervals on the schedule after my 3-mile easy run. The sidewalk in front of my house one of the few flat sports in the neighborhood, so I took off on the first :30 right after I turned the corner for home. Then I nearly ran headlong into this little guy (or gal).
He took a step back; I took a step back. I could hear him breathing; I imagine he could do the same for me. I decided to go back to running and hoped he wouldn’t leap into me. Instead, he just watched all four intervals as he stood in one spot and ate my neighbor’s shrubs. The deer are confident in my neck of the woods.
Two ultra-runners are sharing their stories and proving that exposing your vulnerabilities makes you stronger. Katie Arnold, who has a column in the New York Times this week, is familiar to the tribe already. She’s been on the pod. Her Running Home: A Memoir one all BAMRs should read, even if you have no dreams of running very far. Arnold reminds us that she isn’t Superwoman — and that the goal of becoming her isn’t a goal worth pursuing.
While Katie feels like a friend, Amelia Boone may not. Boone is best known for kicking serious ass in obstacle racing. She moved into ultras a few years ago and took on the infamous Barkley. On social media, Boone is candid about silly things like her love for Pop Tarts and frustrating things like her continual injuries. This week, she revealed she’d been in treatment for the last few months because of her eating disorder. Her raw and fierce post is a testament to her strength.
A local deli/convenience store put this giant rooster out on its front stoop at some point. I nearly hurt myself laughing when I ran past it. Drivers roaring past must have thought I was being attacked by bees. I can’t be the only Bloggess fan, can I? Knock, Knock.
Part of my summer haze can also be chalked up to working on a round of edits for Somebody’s Gotta Do It, my book (!) that will be out in March. At any given moment, three-quarters of my brain is thinking about chapter titles and commas. The movies make book publishing look so sexy. Sadly, the real process involves sitting along in a room, staring at a screen, and wondering if you ever really knew how the English language works.
On that note, how’s your summer running going? Having a blast? Has it happened so fast?