Today presented a golden opportunity: The Bix at Six.
The Bix 7 is one of my favorite races, it being a challenging seven mile course that attracts elite runners. It's pretty cool when your hometown race is popular to the extent that there are statues of Bill Rodgers and Joan Benoit Samuelson, no? And the Bix at Six is a series of training runs, open to the public, that are on the race course.
I have said it before, and I'll say it again: it is so damned cool to have a local race that is such a draw that hundreds of people show up for a training run, the streets are blocked off, and there are water stops.
I left the office after work and hurried home to grab a quick sandwich and to change clothes. As soon as I opened the door to go outside, I knew it was going to be a tough night: it was blazing hot and humid to the point where I felt like I was inside an oven.
This summer, so far, has been blessedly mild, so this was the first really hot weather run I'd done. And having that start out with seven miles worth of hills, after not running a whole lot was a recipe for disaster... baked in the oven I was running in.
So, I made a promise to myself to take it easy and have this run be my first one in getting acclimated to the heat. I dressed in a tank top and running skirt, strapped on the Batman utility belt filled with Gatorade. I was sweating before I even started running. I slowed my pace way down, cut the course to about 5 miles, and took frequent walk breaks. I also make the delightful discovery that my makeup, which has an SPF in it, immediately melts into horrifying pools of poison when I sweat.
Was this the most fun run ever? No, it was not. But it could have been a lot worse. I am going to tough it out through my next couple of oven runs until the heat doesn't seem like such a big deal after all. And I will sing the praises of the glorious volunteers, who actually had ice water.