I love days like this! I fell asleep late last night after writing an email that consisted of some rather out-there stuff... One of those things where you're like "Shit! Did I just hit send?" because there's a chance that you maybe should've edited out half of it.
When I woke up in the morning, I checked my phone for emails and facebook updates. Right off the bat I get a note from fastest guy ever Mario Macias saying he's running the 10k at the Cleveland Marathon. What??? Yes! How exciting to have an awesome fellow Colorado runner representing all the way out in Cleveland with me! How random and extremely cool! I'm so excited to see him throw down at sea level! I have no idea what he can do to a 10k but he killed a 10 miler here (um, at altitude? on a course that's pretty much uphill the whole way?) in 48 minutes. Yes. That actually happened.
Then I got the perfect reply to my email. "That just made my day!" helped get my day started off on the right foot and definitely got a big smile out of me! After that I chatted with my friend for her birthday and then set off on my run.
And what a run it was. I decided it was really important to make my last few miles really strong today to help prepare me for the last 10k of my marathon (though, really, are you ever prepared for that pain?). In order to do that I figured I should go nice and easy for the first part. So I'm running along and feeling really comfortable and relaxed and I check my Garmin just to see: 6:45. No no no no no slow down missy. So I backed off quite a bit, keeping my pace around 7:30-7:35. I felt awesome - it was such a perfect day: warm and cloudy with all the fresh scents of trees blossoming - and was thoroughly enjoying a great spring day. But I knew I'd be doing some work in just a bit. With 6 miles left I picked my pace up to 7:00, and after 2 miles I decided to throw down a progression run for the last 4. Boom! 6:40. Then 6:34.
Then... what the hell is that buzzing? There was a fly or something in my hair. I tried to shake my ponytail but whatever it was was still stuck. I shook it again. And again. And I got scared. Like, really really scared. So right in the middle of Cherry Hills Village I freaked the hell out and started shaking my head around and screaming and then I pulled my hair out of the ponytail and flipped it around even more and batted at it like a meth addict having some sort of heinous hallucination. Finally a little tiny bee flopped to the ground (I really really really hope I didn't hurt him - I just didn't want him in my hair!) and then buzzed off. I looked up and there was a cop car and a black Suburban driving VERY slowly towards me. Oh good. An audience. Now, I'm not sure where Nuggets head coach George Carl lives, but he may or may not live in Cherry Hills and he may or may not have been driving the Suburban and witnessing that little hissy fit.
Anyway. I put my hair up again, smiled, and ran off, definitely motivated to keep up a strong pace! 6:27 and as I was banging out the last mile I started picutring coming up on the finish line. I pictured people holding the tape for me to run through. I pictured the time on the clock ticking away: 2:44:50, 2:44:51, 2:44:52, 2:44:53 and so on. I pictured people cheering. I pictured lifting up my arms and screaming and running hard and bursting through the tape and getting my 3rd marathon win and a place in the Olympic Trials. And it was a great mile. 6:15 and I didn't even feel it.
Then!!! I got to go to the Colorado Running Hall of Fame reception! So awesome! I was sitting just feet away from Shalane Flanagan! Seriously! Everyone's stories were so good and I cried during every one of them. It was such a great evening and I am SO thankful to the Colfax Marathon for the invitation - I really can't think of a better way to end such a great day. It was completely inspiring and I was thrilled to be among such amazing athletes!
Twenty-six day til the twenty-six point two. I'm feeling really good. Very confident. And very excited!