Sunday, April 13, 2014

Day 92: Slaughtered that 16

16.3 in fact!

If you read any recent posts, you'll know I haven't been having the best few weeks ever. And, if you're into the whole astrology thing, Susan Miller's horoscope for us Cancers makes me want to just hide under the bed. But today was a welcome respite from the challenges of late.

I did my usual get-up-at-4:30am-to-eat-oatmeal routine, then slept until 6.  Practice started at 7am sharp and today we had a special Mission Moment.

Virginia told us her story, and thanked us for helping fund the very research that saved her life.

Virginia and her husband Van have been married for over 45 years and each have fought their own battles with blood cancers. In 1997, Virginia was diagnosed with Chronic Myelogenus Leukemia (CML). At the time, the doctors told her she had only 3-5 years to live. Her husband took care of her through a barrage of painful and debilitating treatments and researched day and night until he found a clinical trial for the drug Gleevec. Gleevec is a cancer-treatment that targets the cancerous cells while leaving the heathy cells intact, and a good part of the research around this drug was funded by the Leukemia & Lymphoma society. The treatment was a success and not long after, Virgina and Van found Team in Training.

Since then, the couple has raised over $300,000 for the LLS and run / walked over 27,000 miles.

When you hear stories like that, and you see the dedication of someone who has come through a battle with Leukemia and not only won, but continues to contribute so that the people after her have a similar chance - it puts things in perspective. I shed my cranky pants and got ready to run.

With Virginia's story ringing in my ears, and Bouv's grin in my heart, I attacked the 16-mile run with 27 other brave souls on this beautiful Sunday morning.

The first 7 miles headed east into Santa Monica / Brentwood, round the golf course and back to the starting point where there was water, snacks and Gatorade. My calves were super tight today, and I knew it was going to be a few miles before they loosened up. We had a few folks in our group who are training for the 1/2, and were pushing the pace a bit, so we probably took the first 7 a little too fast. We knew this to be true when we passed one of the groups running longer intervals than us. From San Vincente & Ocean, we headed south until we got to the pier and joined the crowds at the boardwalk. From there we were running down to the Venice Pier (yeah, right past my house :/) and then back up to SV.

We continued along at a healthy pace, and the boardwalk wasn't too dreadfully crowded. We hit the pier and took an obligatory photo, then, we told ourselves, it's just the run home.

Probably around mile 12 or so, I started to feel the results of our speedy pace set in. My hips and calves started to "misbehave" as my old coach Ramon would have said. But our mighty little crew kept it super strong until the very end. My cardio was feeling great, even if my legs hated me.

I said goodbye to my awesome teammates and headed back to my place where I had the best tasting grinder (yeah, I'm from Massachusetts, it's a grinder) from my local and then, since I don't have a tub for the old ice bath, I put on some bathing suit bottoms and a sweatshirt and stood in the surf for 10 minutes or so.
Not a bad way to end the morning after another run of awe-inspiring lengths with my crazy Team in Training friends.

today's mileage: 16.3 miles
season mileage to date: 217.6 miles

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