Saturday, January 8, 2011

Blame it on Rio

My husband Jon and I spent New Year’s morning hoofing through Carmel in the Rio Grill Resolution Run. It made for a nice break in my usual training routines. I hadn’t raced since winning the San Jose Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon back in early October, and I was eager to break up the training monotony.

I had never run a race around here, and I’d always wanted to run Scenic Drive. If you’re not acquainted with Carmel beyond the fact that Clint Eastwood was once mayor here, it’s a very beautiful place and Scenic Drive offers some lovely views of Carmel Bay.

I’m a different sort of person, I see these beautiful places, and I wonder what it would be like to run them. I even see a huge hill and want to do a hill workout up it. I must be sick, but I’m a sucker for scenic runs.

I had also never run Mission Trail, which is up the hill from the shore and is also quite beautiful. Poor Jon, he was once an elite runner, but his job has made him more of a weekend warrior these days.

When I asked him if he had enjoyed the views along the Mission Trail as he ran up he told me with a frown that “I was too busy foaming at the mouth.”

Running this race had been my idea, and since it fell on a Saturday it fit my training schedule. My coach eagerly offered to watch Quin, so I was all set. I was the top women’s finisher, but I had some competition along the way. It was nice to have other runners along, pushing me.

Usually, I’m on my own.

The rainy forecast that morning did concern us a little. Before we left the house, Jon suggested that perhaps he should just stay home with Quin. Nice try. We slipped Quin into some rain boots and met my coach at the starting line.

While we were circling Carmel, Quin was entertaining my coach and waiting at the finish line.

The atmosphere was low-key and everyone seemed to be having a good time. It was a little different from the Plymouth fun run we participated in on Thanksgiving. Runners were dressed up as turkeys for that one. The Rio Run was more of a race atmosphere than that.

All in all things turned out pretty well. I was really happy, no pains, no problems.

After the race we went home, showered and ate some breakfast. Just as I sat down on the couch, I saw my neighbor come trotting home. He had also run in the race, but instead of driving to the starting line, he had run the seven or so miles to the start, run the race and then run back home.

Now that’s dedication.

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