I guess it wouldn't be a marathon training season without getting lost downtown at least once! Julie & I started our 18-miler at Sawyer Point. Pam couldn't join us because the poor thing was on a cruise, and Elizabeth had to work. We ran the same basic route as our 15-miler downtown several weeks ago, but we added 3 miles near Hyde Park so we could get 18 miles in.
Well that was our plan anyway.
I'll start at the beginning. We started out f-a-s-t! Julie wanted to get going to warm up and that we did. The first few miles felt hard, but eventually we made it to 7th avenue where I felt like I was finally in a running groove. The hill came next, and it's always a pleasant surprise that it's not as hard as I think it's going to be. We were rewarded at the top of the hill with a beautiful view of the city. We stopped for our usual photo shoot! (I'm sure Julie will insert a photo here!)
On we went through Eden Park and O'Bryonville with a quick stop at Bob Ronker's for water. Imagine our surprise when it was closed! I looked at my watch and saw we had run from Sawyer Point to there in 69 minutes -- 7.5 miles! I knew we were running fast, but that was a great surprise. Luckily for us the owner of the store heard as at the door and let us in for a quick drink of water. (He let us in, but not happily... They are so much nicer at the Running Spot in Loveland)
Then we were on our way, with Julie totally captivating me with a story as we ran through Hyde Park, and up Madison to Erie. Here's where I added some extra miles -- and also where we took a wrong turn (totally my fault!). We were supposed to turn right to get to Delta, but we turned left...and ran...and ran...and ran...until I started to get an uneasy feeling that we should have come to Delta already. But we kept on running, thinking it's going to be the next block. We were in an area that had very few cars driving by and no one outside. Finally we saw a car coming and waved for the driver to stop. They reluctantly opened their window and told us they had no idea where Delta was. Not a good sign. So then we stopped someone else, and she also wasn't sure, but pointed out a mailman down the road and suggested we ask him. Off we ran to the mail truck to find a nice, young man who confirmed to us that we were running in the wrong direction, and that we were off by 3-4 miles. DARN!
Hard to swallow that little piece of information, but we turned around and headed in the opposite direction. We saw another mail truck and stopped to ask him...Just to be SURE. He confirmed what the first guy told us, but said Delta was more like 5-6 miles away. WHAT??? So we were going to end up adding 10 miles to our 18 mile run...Why that's more than a marathon!!! What to do!!!!???? Well, desparate times call for desparate measures, and I told Julie I was going to stop someone and ask them to drive us back. Yep, the runner's equivalent to hitchhiking -- begging someone for mercy. I saw a Lexus SUV coming out way and took a chance -- A kind, elderly lady was so surprised that we trusted her! She was sweet and mentioined that she had just "run" the mini heart marathon, "but she just did the 5K walk...but could have gone further." Cute. She got us back to the point where we took a wrong turn and we were on our way to Delta again...which came up in under 10 minutes.
Far from feeling defeated, we were on our way again and happy to see Delta so soon! It seemed the the next several miles flew by until we got to the dreaded Eastern Avenue. For some reason, it seemed easier for me this time around. For Julie it was more difficult, but we made it back to our car, thankful we had parked on the east end of the parking lot.
We both felt good -- I seriously haven't felt that good after a long run ever. No soreness whatsoever. I am happily looking forward to the marathon. We're going to have a blast!