Saturday, June 27, 2015

Milling Around

It's a little before 4:00 AM, and I'm stumbling around the house like usual, except more so. Last night’s large quantity of pizza, wine and beer may be a factor. Outside, there’s a downpour of biblical proportions. A nice, easy, dry twenty-miler on the treadmill seems to be in order.

Last night I’d seen the forecast and cancelled plans to run on the towpath with Christine Orwin and her sister. Despite the prognostication, I had still held out a tiny bit of hope that I would be able to run outside today. My Medina friends, Harold Dravenstott, Debbie Scheel, Michelle Wolff and Will Bertemes, were planning to start at 5:30 AM at Panera. I could join them, or possibly just run by myself from home. The treadmill would be my last resort.

But now with the rain coming down this hard, there was no way I would step outside. I sent a Facebook message to the group: “I’ll be milling around.” And by 4:30, I’m on the thing, gradually increasing the speed whilst changing channels before finding a Rick Steves episode.

Did I ever mention that I hate treadmills? No, I don’t generally like running in rain either, but which is worse? This would be a good test: would I be able to stay on the thing for 20 miles, like I used to? The answers to these questions turn out to be: yes, treadmills and no.

It’s 5:00 AM, and I’m changing channels, looking for anything interesting, when I come across the one that shows the weather radar 24 x 7. It’s still green (meaning light rain) in Medina county, but most of the yellow (heavy rain) has moved on. Maybe I can still join the Medina gang!

I finish my fifth mile. Thank goodness I was able to get even this far. I clean up as fast as I can, and hop in the car to drive down to Medina. It’s still raining, but not so hard. It occurs to me, and this thought is later confirmed by Michelle, that my message about ‘milling around’ could be a little ambiguous. At the time I had only meant that I’d be running on the treadmill instead of joining the group, but it could also be taken to mean that I’ll be there to run with them.

At 5:30 I pull into the Panera parking lot, and Debbie and Michelle are already there. Will and Harold join us shortly, and we’re off.

The light rain is now coming down in buckets once again. The funny thing is, we don’t mind. Running in the rain really isn’t so bad; it’s usually just getting started that’s tough. We’re actually having fun, running through puddles and getting soaked. At some point, you can’t get any wetter.

A couple hours later, I drop the gang off and run out again for a final mile of these fifteen. I was going to get my twenty in today even if it killed me.

But it didn’t. In fact, it was fun.

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