Monday, September 17, 2007

Philly Distance Run

Jake, nice work on another solid victory. Given the weather situation I wouldn't be concerned with the time so much, just jump in the half at Baltimore. Bandit it if need be.

Team That's What She Said was in action up in Philly this weekend, and despite my pure, unadulterated hate for this place, I love this event. Saturday morning came and the weather had pulled a 180, dropping the humidity and temps in the 80s for temps in the 60s with a decent wind blowing. Unfortunately it took us almost 3 hours to make it to Philly, and we got to the expo around 4:20 (supposed to close at 5). Arjun, Melissa, Ben, Joel and I crammed into a nice little hotel room, and LT came out with us to eat that night. It was fun to hang out where we were (University City), which was near Drexel and UPenn. Then Joel was really into watching some soft-core porno show on HBO.

Wake up time on Sunday was 6:15, and we awoke to temperatures in the low 50s. It was chilly. We jogged over to the starting line and somehow managed to all lose each other. I did manage to find Barf and Joel at the starting line, and Joel and I ran together for the first 2 miles. We weaved through people with amazing skill and ran a surprising 5:57 first mile. That's when we caught up to LT, and he caught on as we rolled through mile 2 in 5:51. I've never felt more at ease aerobically in a race. Then my leg started getting angry at me. Miles 3, 4 and 5 for me and Terence were 6:01, 6:00, 5:59. If I could only knock out a few more at 6 minute pace, I thought, I'll be cool to slow down at mile 8 or 9. Well mile 6 turned out to be 6:20, I told Terence to just leave me and my race was done. Stopped to stretch in mile 7, took a dump in mile 8, stopped again to stretch around mile 10 or 11. Every step was so painful, I couldn't bear it. I would have stopped if I could have, but walking would have taken me 2 hours and I was too proud to register a DNF. I was now "running" in the 8:40s. It was the most miserable running experience of my life.

Fortunately I got to the finish line, nearly in tears, and saw the compadres and found out they had done awesome! Ben, 1:11:43, faster than he thought he was going to run. Kyle, 1:08:08. Joel and Arjun wound up finishing pretty close to one another, and Joel's last 4 miles were UNREAL. Arjun wins the award for closest gun to net time (+0:00), and after last week's 3x3mile workout I can't believe he was standing. Terence ran a 2 minute PR. That's huge! The weather was ideal, in the upper 50s, mid 60s by the end. Still a little breezy but it didn't seem to have too much of an effect. Kris showed up to watch, and loaned Joel a sweatshirt because the idiot left his stuff under a tree and "couldn't believe someone would steal it." Melissa was a huge help, carrying stuff and cheering us on.

After showering up at the hotel we rolled out, didn't have to deal with the traffic from the day before and we drove down to University of Delaware for lunch. Then Arjun got wasted off of his Bloody Mary and Melissa had to drive home. In other racing news, Chrissie rocked out with a huge PR at Parks Half Marathon ( and you'll see her picture) and Dave Berardi finished 5th in 17:03 at a 5k in Columbia.

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