Hey Groucho readers. I need to apologize for my absence last Sunday. I can explain… sort of. Here’s a brief recap of the last couple weeks. Last Thursday I told my wife I had a selfish reason to go visit her friend Beth and her family just outside Philadelphia. We didn’t have any plans for the weekend and we could bring the kids, so it didn’t take any convincing. The Rock and Roll Half Marathon was set to take place at 8 am Sunday morning and since I’m getting ready to run a marathon, why not use the race for my Sunday long run and add another cool medal to my collection? Well, phone calls were placed, arrangements were made, we packed, and headed south after my son got out of school on Friday.
We arrived on Friday night and after the excitement wore off a little we put our two kids and their three kids to bed. If you have kids you know how exhausting that can be. “Hey, you two six year old boys. Go to sleep.” Yeah right. On Saturday morning the older kids had an activity planned so I took my two year old son in to Philly and went to the expo to pick up my race packet and check out all the exhibits. There was surprisingly little swag in the race packet, in fact, just some advertisements for local businesses. I understand that last year everyone got “free” sunglasses in the packets. I bought a Brooks Philly Half Marathon running hat in addition to the tech shirt I got because I think hats are the longest lasting souvenirs you can get. Brooks was the major sponsor of the race, can you tell? Anyway, when we got back it was time to pack up both families and get ready to go out to dinner. By the time we were done with all that and the kids were once again in bed, I didn’t have time to run off to Starbucks and get my blog post done. Sorry about that.
I drove myself to Philly Sunday morning and the race went very well. I finished in 1:45 and change and scored about a 13 minute PR. I was excited about that. Most of the race, after about mile four was a struggle. I attribute that to terrible nutrition for a couple days leading up to the race combined with not sleeping as well as I would have in my own bed at home. Despite those facts, I’m pleased of the result and happy to have a shiny new PR. I think it had been over a year since my last half marathon which would help explain such a big improvement. Personally, I think its really cool to be able to run a half marathon on three days notice. I’m kind of proud to carry that level of fitness, though I do wonder if I would have been able to do it if I didn’t have a marathon coming up in a few weeks. I’d like to think so.
So that was last week. This week has had its own high note. We’d been planning to spend this weekend on the St Lawrence River in the 1000 Islands. We are fortunate to be able to do this with some frequency because my wife’s parents have a great place up there. Before we left my wife said the magic words, “Are you going to bring your bike?” ‘Nuff said. I packed up both bikes and gear for both of us and Saturday morning she and I had our first bike ride together. We rode about 17 miles on an out and back route along the river to Thousand Islands Park, a historic community on Wellesley Island. Google it, its awesome. Its like going back in time. It was a really nice ride and I was able to teach her a little bit about shifting and drafting etc. We even averaged around 18 mph for the last few miles, which is pretty good for a brand new roadie.
And there you have it. Two weeks of great running and cycling activities. Fun for the whole family. The next thing on my list is to get one of those attachments to make my bike into a tandem so my son can join in. Pretty soon we’ll all be out there on the road enjoying family time and fitness all wrapped into one.