Friday, June 29, 2012

Running Towards Death

Today's Miles: 0.42 miles plus some gymnastics.

What I like about being on the edge of the Central Time Zone, is that daybreak happens around 4:30 a.m. This means I can go out in any town and run before my work day starts. And it's not dark. And scary.

This morning, I decided to get a 30-45 minute tempo run under my legs.

So, what happened.

This did.....

"What?" you ask.
"An intersection?"
"A beautifully landscaped crosswalk? With benches for the weary shoppers?"

This, my friends, is the most dangerous intersection in Manitowoc, Wisconsin. Don't let the peace and tranquility of this place fool you! It's more dangerous than a packed New York City subway platform!

"What's so dangerous about it?" you ask again, because you obviously are not observant enough!

Here, try this:

Is that better? Do you get it now!?

I was jogging along (during my warm-up), getting ready to cross the street to a long straight away with level sidewalks that lead to the greenway along the lake. I thought that looking at the intersection (where the cars were) to avoid getting run over by said car was more important than looking down to see where I'm stepping. I mean it's huge, and there's nothing scary about it, right? A few benches? Some plants? 

Big. Freaking. Mistake.

Ah, geezz! Do I have to spell it out for you??


"What's that?" you ask.

That, my friends, is a death trap! I actually think it might be the head off of a sprinkler, but I don't really care WHAT it is used for.

What it does (to the unsuspecting runner - that's merely jogging through this HUGE sidewalk/crosswalk area looking at the traffic in the intersection to determine if she can safely cross the road) is nearly kill her.

This round beauty found itself under my left foot (the one with tendonitis last year, with Plantar Fasciitis until recently, and all-around-my-least-favorite-foot). I found myself trying not to land in oncoming traffic.

I'm fairly certain had I just let myself fall, my ankle would not be sprained and hurting and swelling and propped up in my hotel room with ice on it.

However, I would have landed in the road and most likely been run over by the oncoming traffic. (Side note: Where the hell are all of these people going at 5:00a.m.???)

I'm pretty sure the guy that honked at me while passing was merely giving me a "Perfect 10" for my mad-life-saving-gymnastic skills.

So am I just pissed & embarrassed for tripping and nearly falling out all over the place in front of a ton of people?  

Puh. Leaz..

I don't get embarrassed.

I'm pissed.
I'm pissed I twisted my ankle and I'm a few weeks out from a 10K.
I'm pissed it was my left one - not my right-"I'm Soooo perfect"-foot.
I'm even MORE pissed that I broken my running sunglasses during my graceful performance. If you've ever needed no-fog glasses, you understand my irritable mood. If you've ever bought a pair, now you really get it.

This running thing is going to kill me one of these days. But I guess we all are going to die at some point. Since the day we were born we were dying. We don't typically have control over how long we'll each be on this earth. Good people die young or in agony. Bad people die old and peacefully in their sleep. There's no comprehensible reasoning to it - other than we're not in charge of when or necessarily how it will happen.

Which makes me wonder - why is it when someone dies of a heart attack while running a race (whether it's a marathon or a 5K), people tell me to "Be Careful". Like running is going to make my life shorter some how? I'm fairly certain if someone dies while running they were either 1) going to have a heart attack anyway - somewhere, someday - regardless of their fitness level; or 2) trying to get fit and it was the 40 years prior to that run that caused the heart attack.

Be Careful out there guys! I heard that someone died while driving down the interstate and crashed their car!

Oh, and Be Careful! You don't want to choke on those cheese puffs your stuffing down your throat while feed your XBox addiction.

At least if I had died while running - whether from a heart attack or getting ran over - it's what I love doing.

Death is a part of life.You need to stop worrying about when and where you'll die, and just be prepared for it.

Enough about death. Time to take a few days off (according to my coach and therapist, the great  marathoner Jennie Vee Silk). The hay is in the barn. Thanks JV. I needed the pep talk.

Gotta run......

Gotta limp & hobble....

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