I wasn't feeling well yesterday. I wasn't sure if I wanted to run this morning. When Mike texted me yesterday to see if we were on, I told him to text me in the morning. I also told him the forecast was calling for rain. So he texted me and said that we would take this week off. When morning rolled around I saw my wife getting ready to go out. It looked like it had rained a little during the night. I asked her where she was going. She said Hilltop. I said that I wanted her to take me to the top of Usery Pass so that I could try that run again. I still wasn't feeling great, but figured I could do 4.5 miles easy enough and that would get me to Hilltop. So we hop in the van and realize we need gas. We get gas and start heading east. I could see some rain clouds in the distance but hoped that they were far enough away where I wouldn't get a whole lot. Well, it was moving towards us quickly. By the time we got to Hilltop it was dumping buckets down. My wife said she didn't want to hike in this rain. I still wanted to run so we kept going. There is a property close that we've looked at before. Vickie suggested we drive by while it's raining and see how much water goes through the washes. We drove to it, and I hopped out. I took a look, and it wasn't a whole lot, but it was some. It would definitely need to be re-routed, which could be expensive. Then I jumped back in the van and we drove to the top.
I was hoping that the rain would die down some. It might have a little, but it was still coming down pretty good. And I noticed a couple of washes running across the road that I would have to run through. I got out of the van and stretched out a little. I got my water bottle in one pocket and had my Strava running on my phone in the other. My wife asked me what I wanted her to do. I said just drive down a mile and see how I'm doing. I figured I'd know within the first mile if my sickness from yesterday would impede me from doing a 10+ mile run today. So she drove about a half mile down the road. I was feeling good when I got to her. Just some tightness in my legs. I gave her the thumbs up and told her that it wasn't a mile :) I kept going and she drove on. That's when I saw a rattlesnake on the shoulder. I could tell that it was smooshed. I actually passed it, stopped and turned around and took a picture of it.
Other than a couple of stop lights, this was the only time I stopped during the run. Vickie stopped again at the 1 mile mark. I was still doing good. The next mile was the steepest downhill mile, so I was still feeling pretty good other than the tightness. But my vision was getting impaired because not only were raindrops falling on my glasses, but they were fogging up. So I handed them to Vickie and ran the rest of the way without them. My feet were pretty soaked from runnning through the washes. The deepest one was probably only about 3-inches deep, but enough to cover my feet. I hoped that wet socks wouldn't equate to blistered feet later on. About mile 3 I felt a stinging feeling in the scrotissory area. You know, like when an ant crawls up your pant leg and bites you. We've all exprienced that. I tried making adjustments and pinching my shorts just in case.
Vickie was stopping about every mile after that. It was nice that she spent her morning waiting for me. I got to Brown Road which is about the 4 mile mark. Probably a little over because I actually started about a tenth of a mile from the top because there's that nice place to park on the side of the road, and since it was raining, it made sense to stop at a safer place. Anyway I was feeling good. The rain actually felt great and made me happy. The tightness was going away, but it would soon be replaced with soreness. I figured I'd done 9.2 miles last week, so as long as I could do that again, I'd only have about a mile to go to get home. And this was all downhill, so I remained optimistic. I talked myself through the uphill of going over the freeway. I think that's where I started to fall apart last time I attempeted this. But I told myself that it was the heat that made me give up at the 7 mile mark. I knew I was at least half way there and kept on plugging away.
My overall pace was 10:07. But looking at my splits I was really slowing down. My wife says I was looking good. She snapped this picture of me.
I think I finally took my first drink around mile 5. I still had some left over when I finished. I got to mile 7 where I had given up last time. I knew I could make it. Just two and a half miles to go west and then I turn and run 0.6 miles south. That last mile seemed like a bit of a struggle, but I pushed myself. Right before I turned I saw a lady walking her dog on the other side of the street. I could hear her trying to talk to me, but wasn't exactly sure what she said. The gist of it was - Great job. It's a great morning to be out running. I agreed. I turned and ran past my wife one last time. I got home and was soaked! I asked her to help me take my shoes and socks off in the entrance way. She's the best. I then went to the bathroom to take a shower. That's when I noticed that the ant bite was actually chaffing. Yowza! I missed that spot with the Body Glide. I showed my wife, in a manly fashion, and she cringed. I started the shower and she asked if I would be all right. No sooner did she ask then all the sweat started running over my wound, and I screamed like a little girl. But I was all right. I know I'm going to be sore for a few days. It's still raining. But it was an epic run and totally worth. it.