Sunday, August 24, 2008

Walk It Off

Back to work tomorrow. Hey, it couldn't last forever. The last few days were pretty busy. After taking the girls up to see my mom Thursday, we went with Deb after dinner to an ice cream stand in Danvers that also has a driving range so I could hit a bucket of balls while the girls enjoyed some dessert. Friday, Deb was off to her workshop again and I took the girls over to a friend's house for a BBQ lunch/play date. The kids had a blast running around and me and the moms hung out all afternoon.

That evening, I ran the Derby Street Mile in Salem. I parked at my buddy Rick's condo complex about a mile from the start and we jogged over. The race went from the Salem Harbor power plant to the new waterfront hotel, with quarter-mile splits marked off. We started up front because we didn't want to get stuck behind any kids. All told, there were 347 runners. I wasn't really sure how I wanted to approach this race because I usually run much longer distances. I haven't run a timed mile since high school; the best time I can recall running was 6:15, back in 10th grade in Washington State. Of course, I was a scrawny little 125-pound puke in those days. Now I'm a good 30-35 pounds heavier. I was hoping for something around 6:30. I probably started too fast, but I knew that after a slight initial hill, there was a downhill and I could ease up a bit. I really started to feel strain even in my shoulders about halfway through. Rick passed me about then and I didn't try to keep up because he's waaaaaaay faster than me. I tried to keep up a good pace and stuck with the folks around me. As we closed in toward the finish I saw that I would finish under 6 minutes and just chugged in at 5:58. I was pretty spent at the end, but it would have been worse if I had really pushed it before the finish line. I exceeded my expectations, so I was happy. I ended up finishing 46th overall; Rick sped in at 5:37, good for 29th overall.

On Saturday, I had my company golf tournament at Sagamore Springs in Lynnfield. I stacked my foursome with some good players: Stevie Z and my old buddies Mike and Chris, the latter of whom is especially outstanding. We were seeded as the top team and didn't disappoint. Thanks to some massive drives from Chris and some nice shots from everyone else (including me on occasion), we finished with a 62, 8 under par. It was a best ball tournament, which took the pressure off me and even Steve to an extent. It was a great day out and we had fun with the whole thing. Chris also won the longest drive competition. Steve and I went out for a few beers afterward with everyone; Chris and Mike both had to take off right afterward. When I got home, Deb informed me that we were invited to a friend's house for a cookout, so we went over around 7 and stayed until about 10. After putting the kids to bed, both of us fell asleep in front of the tube.

All the eating and drinking and lateness didn't bode well for my long run this morning. I needed to do 17 miles, but wasn't able to get out the door until just before 10 a.m. So much of the run was done with the midday sun beaming down on me, plus I was tired and listless and my legs felt like lead. Just didn't have any energy. It was a Bataan death march-like experience at times, but I got through it. Chilled out watching the Jays-Sox game (Sox won 6-5 in extra innings) and then we went to yet another cookout.

Bulleted list of items:

  • So, Obama's VP pick is Joe Biden, huh? Seems to me he gives Obama a running mate with plenty of foreign policy and Senate experience to answer all those charges of inexperience. He also is a feisty attack dog that Obama can sic on McCain without having to get his own mitts too dirty. Of course, McCain counters by running ads that play to all those pissed-off Hillary supporters, saying that Obama betrayed her by not picking her as VP. Honestly, I don't get what those folks are so up in arms about. They really come off sounding like sore losers, but they could be pretty pivotal if they actually support McCain instead. Should be an interesting convention this week.
  • The Olympics are over. I was bummed I missed the men's marathon yesterday, but I saw a lot of cool stuff. Bring on the NFL season!

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