Holding true to my every-other-day philosophy, Friday was a workout day. The weather around here has been absolutely perfect for running. Friday, I was blessed with 60 degrees and clear skies. My legs have been feeling better and better lately, so I decided to to try out a new route. Instead of heading towards Medicine Lake, I headed east instead.
The first thing I discovered was that, well, would you believe we've been living in our home for 4 years and I never knew there was a dog park within a mile of the house? Sheesh. I should change up directions more often. I passed the dog park and jogged through Bassett Creek Park. This area has some special meaning for me. It's where they used to hold a lot of my old Cross Country races back in high school. The park hasn't changed a bit and the old memories started flooding back. Good stuff.
After the Bassett Creek, I headed over Highway 100 via a nice new footbridge and followed the creek with some nicely paved paths. If I were to have kept heading east, I would have eventually run into the Theodore Wirth area. The Wirth trails can eventually hook up with just about every trail in town. I'll have to keep this route in mind for some longer weekend runs.
When I noticed that the sun was starting to go down, it was time to head back towards home. Once I crossed back over (actually UNDER) the highway, I was in familiar territory again. There wasn't a lot of light left, so I made a bee-line home. I covered the 7.6 mile run in under 1:15 but still kept the effort nice and relaxed. My body is REALLY digging the cooler weather lately. It's nice to be able to run longer and faster without it feeling harder.
|Pretty much everything in the Northeast portion of the route was new to me.|
Once I got home, The Wife and I decided to go out on an honest to goodness date. Cash has been pretty tight lately, especially since we spent so much dough during Ironman weekend. So, we've been holding back on any extra spending. I'm officially in 'thrifty' mode, so it wasn't easy to get me out, but I have to admit that a pizza and a couple of beers with my sweetie sure felt good.
Saturday was another perfect day on the weather front. My cousin plays soccer for Minnehaha Academy, so The Wife and I decided to catch the homecoming game. The only bad thing about this plan was that the school is right on the West River road, which is part of the route for the TC 10-Miler and the Twin Cities Marathon, so a bunch of the roads were blocked for race weekend. We ended up a few minutes late, but fortunately didn't miss any scoring.
The Minnehaha boys did a great job and ended up winning 2-0. Way to go guys! After the game, we met up with my Uncle, Aunt and cousin. My aunt's mom and sister also came to the game. Her sister was in town to run the Marathon on Sunday. It was cool to talk with her. She's a wicked strong runner - she's done ump-teen marathons and has even qualified for Boston. She even tried her hand at a tri this past summer, but didn't care too much for the swim. I don't blame her. That was one of the roughest parts for me at my first tri.
On Saturday evening, The Wife and I headed over to some friends' house to just chill and hang out. Or at least, that's what she TOLD me we would be doing. Instead, when I walked in their door, I heard about a dozen people yell 'SURPRISE!'. Then I saw my mother in-law, and my parents and many of our closest friends. Honestly, at first I thought that they were all together to celebrate something The Wife did. But then I saw all the Ironman-themed decorations. Holy Crap! This party was for ME!.
It was great. I hadn't seen most of these people since the race and it was the perfect way to catch up with them. Plus, if you've ever known someone that's completed an Ironman, you know that they LOVE to keep talking about the race. They had all kinds of great snacks and even a Dairy Queen Ice Cream Cake! A freakin' Dairy Queen ICE CREAM CAKE! Sweet!
I've gotta hand it to The Wife for keeping this a secret. I heard that she had wanted to have the get-together the week after the race, but I was too knocked out by the flu. Keeping the secret for that long had to have been killing her. Well played Honey. Well played.
After all the shenanigans on Saturday, I decided to go for a nice bike ride down the Greenway trail on Sunday morning. Eventually the trail meets up with the river, right around mile 20 of the marathon. I got going a little late, but was pleased to see that there were still plenty of racers out on the course. These weren't the speed machines that finish in 3 hours or less. These were the average Joe and Jane Schmos that just wanted to finish a marathon, no matter how long it took. It was encouraging to see them slog it out through the toughest part of the course while there were will still thousands of volunteers and cheer crews lining the streets.
I headed back home and thew on some comfy clothes. I spent the next several hours with The Wife alternating between 'Football Time' and 'Nappy Time'. It was a well-spent afternoon.
It was a great weekend. With family, friends, races, football and even Ice Cream Cake, I couldn't have asked for more.
If you frequent this site, then you've got a few things to look forward to, I'm finally solidifying my fall and spring schedule, plus I'm working on my next product review. This one will actually be a comparison between two popular anti-chafing products. After all, friction is an athlete's worst enemy.