Ahhhh. . . 18 miles. I am tempted to call my friend Meghan and say, “I just ran 18 miles, what have you done today?” She used to always call her dad and say that after our runs. I have to say that running 18 miles by myself does give me a sense of accomplishment. I am amazed that I can handle being alone with myself with no TV, music, or other outside distraction to keep me from my thoughts.
The alarm went off and I was dreading the weather that was waiting for me. I laid in bed for a few minutes when I realized I heard birds chirping. I thought, “Wait a minute, if it’s pouring down rain, birds don’t usually chirp.” I got up and realized it was sprinkling and it was 40 degrees out, not the heavy rain at 34 degrees changing to snow that was forescasted. I really need to stop listening to the forecast so much. They really seem to be missing it recently.
So I headed out and I was on my way. I decided to head south again, as I think I over did the northern route and can’t bear to run up Racine to Clark again. I ran down Michigan to Roosevelt over to the Museum Campus. Instead of heading straight to the lakefront path, I ran around Soldier Field and out to the Planetarium. I cut south at the Planetarium to run out Northerly Island.
What is now known as Northerly Island once was Meigs Field. Until one day, well night rather, Mayor Daley, in a state of paranoid psychosis, decided to have the landing strip at Meigs field dug up and removed. He feared that it presented a huge terrorists threat. Whatever, he had plans for the land that no longer included an airport, so he did as he pleased. Anywho. . . it has now been turned into a prarie/ bird sanctuary which is actually quite nice once you get past the deserted control tower and random construction.
I was running right along the harbour when the path ended and there was nothing but riff-raff. So I had climb over this to get to a field which stood between me and the (just noticed) paved path. I bounded through the field and onto the path. Just as I was starting on the path, I saw some good sized critter frollick through the prarie. I’m thinking it was a coyote, we seem to have those here in the city. That was pretty cool.
I made my way back to the Museum Campus and headed north. I continued along the lakefront path. As I was approaching the North Ave Beach house, I heard a bit of a squeal, a THUNK and turned in time to see a guy finish spinning out on Lake Shore Drive, stop facing the wrong way, and then just turn around and drive off. I can’t believe no one else was hit and that he was able to just drive away. It was kind of surreal.
I was happy to arrive at the North Avenue Beach house and find the bathrooms unlocked. Woo hoo! During my 16 mile run two weeks ago, the last three miles were spent thinking how I had to use the bathroom and couldn’t wait to get home. Today though I had access to bathrooms, so that distraction would not occur again. Did you know that the doors on the bathroom stalls at the North Avenue Beach house are called “Hinie Hiders”? yup, I learned that today.
I continued on my way to finish my run. The last two miles were pretty brutal. My left IT band started freaking out, getting really tight and causing me some pain. The pain continued down my hip, into my knee, and a wee bit beyond. I was able to get through it, but was VERY glad when I was done with the run. The next five weeks I will use my foam roller religiously to make sure that doesn’t happen during the marathon. It’s going to hurt like all hell at first, but I should be able to slowly stretch it out and it will no longer hurt.