- date: 04/30/05
- time: evening
- weather: 51 ºF, rain, wind SW at 15 mph
- mileage: today-8, week-19.1, year-151.1
- resting (bpm): 62
- after workout (bpm): 134
- weight: +28
Other than the literal sense, there’s something revealing about standing naked in front of a mirror. The run was over. I stood on my porch and looked around to make sure none of my neighbors were out and about. Check. I peeled off the colorform that was my shirt. My running shoes, prized for their scant weight, were water-logged squishing with every step. Off, off and then my socks. I looked around again. Still no one in sight. The track pants were next and joined my other clothes in the soggy pile next to my front door. Though my running shorts are skimpier than my boxers, somehow they feel more acceptable as public outerwear. Oh, hi neighbor.
It wasn’t raining when I started. Yeah, it had been raining all day, but my previously impeccable sense of precipitation told me the skies were done for the day. I told myself that this was going to be an entirely selfish run. I’d go as long or short, fast or slow, as I pleased. I wouldn’t beat myself up if I had to stop and walk it out. I might even duck into a pub for a beer and some darts at 10k. Doh dee doh dee doh dee doh… This was fun. And then the rains came.
At first it was light and steady, nothing my high tech fibers couldn’t repel. Then, I started to notice that I had to allocate increasing attention to avoiding puddles. Crescendo the rain, as if the skies were punishing my slaphappy attitude. Well, walking was out. No way I was staying out there any longer than required. Problem was, I was 4 miles from home. It was getting dark. Plunk, there it went. Water raced into my shoe much faster than I was racing home. My sock hungrily accepted the moisture.
I remembered a day walking on the beach with some friends. I’d pick up a stone and say, “Hey, you’d look great wet. So get wet.” I’d then promptly skip it into the oncoming surf.
On this run, I couldn’t get any wetter, so what the hay. I splashed near ankle high puddles and shuffled through streams of run-off. I zigged and zagged to ensure that I hit most of them. Would the rain make me as fetching as those stones now drowned, probably buried by the tides? After the porch incident, I went inside to finish dressing down and catch a hot shower. Is it cheating wearing sweatpants to an all-you-can-eat? Fine, I’ll put out some dressier clothes. I’ll even wear a belt. It is my birthday after all. I grabbed a towel, not fresh from the laundry, but middle-stacked in the closet. Fresh nonetheless. Ah, the mirror. I raised both hands chest high in the double six-shooter position and gave my reflection a three-quarter smirking headshot. “What a piece of work is man …”