Running and Biking and Surprises Along the Way
Running and biking have given me several opportunities to experience so many things that I never thought I would experience in this lifetime. However, there have come a few obscure things that I never really planned on experiencing. Read on to find out more about these either funny or interesting or just plain crazy things I have experienced either on my runs or during my bike rides.
When I’m training for something long, I drop water at different stops along the running route I plan to take so I don’t get dehydrated and don’t have to carry the water. (I hate water belts.) I usually drop them about every 3 miles depending on the route and the length. This time I had dropped water at two different spots. One at about 3.5 miles and the next being at about 6 miles. When it is extra hot out, this is about the norm for me. Anyway, I love vodka, and it’s really expensive at concerts, so I had a water bottle in my fridge full of it ready to go to an upcoming concert. However, I grabbed a couple of water bottles from the fridge to drop on my running route. It’s about 85 degrees and I’m coming up on my first water stop (and really needing it at this point). I grab the bottle I had dropped on the side of the road and proceed to gulp it before I realized it was straight vodka! I spewed it all over the road trying to catch my breath in the process. Ugh and two and a half more miles until my next water bottle, which HOPEFULLY was not vodka as well! Not one of my greater runs to say the least.
I was training for my first half Ironman, so I was out on one of those long bike rides that lasts several hours. Just as I was just a few miles from finishing my bike ride, I saw one of the most amazing things I have ever seen while out on my bike. I saw a calf just seconds after being born in the field next to the road. I had to stop my bike and check this out. The umbilical cord was actually still attached, and it was starting to try to move around and get up. The farmer was not there. No one was there...but me. What an amazing thing to see just out on a regular bike ride. New life happening right in front of me.
I Have a Temper
Sometimes I get mad and throw things...but only when no one is around. I seem to control it better when people are watching. I was out on a longer run and decided to break in some newer running shoes, which is never a good idea on a long run. About two miles in, my right foot was going so numb that I had to keep taking off my shoe and rubbing my foot. (For whatever reason, this always happens until they are broken in, and I knew this already.) I was getting really frustrated at both myself and the shoes. They were ruining my run. While I had the shoe off, I got mad and threw it against the pavement. Well, the shoe hit the road just right and bounced right into the deep ditch next to the road and started to float down the stream of water. I had to retrieve the other half of my new shoes, so I climbed through the waist-deep weeds and slid down the hill of mud to get it and then crawled back out. One side of me was covered in mud along with the shoe I still had on. I took it off and now had to walk back barefooted, since I was NOT wearing those damn shoes. Not only were they wet and muddy, but I despised them at the moment. On my two-mile, barefooted walk home, some nice old man stopped and asked if I was okay. How embarrassing it was to have to tell him I was fine but had just thrown a fit with my shoe. The shoes turned out fine and are now well-broken in, and I have now forgiven them for an awful run.
I'm not fast, but I beat an Indy Car Driver
At the 2013 Miami Ironman 70.3, I find bringing in my gear to set up and look over at a crowd of people around some guy with his bike. Oh my! It was Tony Kanaan, the winner of the 2013 Indianapolis 500! He was showing his bike to some people and was racing the same race I was the following day! Anyway, I looked up results later to see how he did, and he had a DNF (did not finish), so technically I beat him, right?? Sorry, Tony. You're still a much faster driver than me. I just hope you weren't hurt during this race and that wasn't the reason for your DNF.
Not So Great Farm Experience
As I mentioned above, I have run in some pretty hot temperatures. Sometimes any kind of rain or water of (almost) any kind is very much welcomed during these hot runs. I had just climbed a large hill that led to a cemetery a couple of miles from my house when I noticed a sprayer in the field that was spraying over part of the cemetery I was running through. It looked so refreshing! I could run through some water to cool off before I was to head back home. Nope. As I'm running through it, I smell something AWFUL! It was liquid manure! Oh. My. Gosh. I just got sprayed with manure...while already sweaty...and no other water in sight...and still a couple of miles from my house! Anyway, after a much worse run home, I made it, I showered, and I lived to tell about it.
I've had some fun times and some really sucky times while out on a run or a ride. However, I wouldn't trade any of them. They have made me stronger and have given me the opportunity to see areas I normally would not see if in a car driving and experience things I would have never experienced both good and bad. They've also given me some good stories to tell. I have had so many amazing occurrences experiencing the world in my running shoes or on the seat of my bike. Now get out there and go find your own experiences!