It has been raining in NY for eight days straight. Fortunately, the rain is supposed to let up before the Staten Island Half.
But, between the rain and work, I missed Wednesday's scheduled run, and I didn't make it up today, I just ran the 3 my schedule called for. My IT band has been hurting the last few days and I haven't been able to keep my PT appointments...
But tonight was different. Tonight, I made a decision to run come hell or (likely) high water. I didn't have much energy today, haven't had enough sleep for a week, and didn't even get pumped up listening to my running mix. But upon stepping out of the subway, I got my first good sign: It had stopped raining!
I took this as a message from above, saying that if I wanted to run, I better get a move on; that God would let me run rain-free if I'd just get to it. So, after a very brief stop at home to drop my bag and take off my clothes (I had underdressed in my running clothes, thinking I might be able to run Central Park at lunch), I was out the door.
For being so stiff and sore all week, the run was amazingly good. Usually it takes three miles just to warm up, but I was warmed up in a quarter mile and really doing well headed uphill at a half mile. The pain in my tendons melted away.
I made the loop to Prospect Park, my old place (to pick up mail) and home. As I ran, it was almost like running in the country at night. Everything was black and wet. Crossing an expressway was like crossing a raging river - the wind, the rush of wet sound, the works.
Continuing on, I crossed tributaries and followed rights or lefts without willing myself, carried along by red and green lights like a blood cell approaching capillaries. The trees along the route shadowed the sidewalks, sometimes quite darkly near burned out streetlights, making the journey over the broken concrete, pitted with years of weathering and cracked from upthrust tree roots, a cross-country trail run.
As I pounded uphill, my speed actually increased. Thanks to the antibiotics I'm on, my breathing has gotten easier; I sped up towards the park breathing a 2-in, 2-out pattern without stress. My legs felt good; my lungs felt good.
As I crested the Hill and headed back down towards my old apartment, a warm, drier breeze whipped past me and I looked up at the sky. I could see clouds skudding past, with big breaks between. Had the sun been up, I'm sure a rainbow would have been out. Instead, the dark and dirty ink of the night sky, frosted with the salmon-colored glow of civilization, would have to serve as my dark rainbow; a promise - I hope - that God will never again send me eight days of rain to ruin my schedule before a big race.
Damn, the shower felt good!
Oh, and before I go, I would like to make mention of Fage authentic greek yogurt, the stuff with the honey in the separate little pot. I can't believe how good this stuff is! It's loaded with fat and natural sugars, both of which are good for me. And the taste and texture - sweet jeebus, could Man find a way to cram more decadence into such a little cup?