Thursday, October 02, 2008

Running on Empty

I'm seriously late this week on my updates. It's been busy. I need to get my weekly total up for my training, but am starting with my Saturday long run. I'd slacked a bit during the week, in anticipation of the weekend's big push being the 61.5 Silver Comet ride. I wasn't sure I'd make it, as the normal truck fill up was not possible in Sandy Springs on Friday. The family was not going to be able to meet me at the Alabama state line to bring me home when there was no way to guarantee we'd find a station somewhere along the way.

I popped out of bed at 5:30 Saturday morning. Checked the local website, to see who had gas near me. Pulled into the line for the BP at Roswell and Hammond at 5:59 a.m. Made it to the pumps at 7:48. The line wasn't really that long; the pressure on the Regular was just that low. It was taking 10-15 minutes for each car to fill. I noticed nobody was using the Ultimate. It wasn't bagged. I tried it. Filled my 26 gallon tank super fast, and I was on the way out of the station long before my fellow drivers had even hit the halfway point on regular. Made it home a few minutes after 8:00. No way to make the 7-7:30 kickoff of the ride in Smyrna.


I made myself some oatmeal while getting the kids breakfast. Tried to figure out a route for my long run which would let everyone have a mini adventure. I decided to run the long way from home to the Chattahoochee River. Not my normal route by the river, but up toward Roswell. Riverside Park would be a great place for my support crew to meet me for the drive home. I started out around 11:00, and was planning to call them about five miles in, so they'd have time to play.

Lots to see on my route. And at 9.51 (or 9.35, depending on which website I use to measure - I'm going with 9.51), I had lots of time to see it. Red Baron Antiques on Roswell Road was having an auction, with military vehicles and cool old cars. I'm posting a few photos. A 1965 Armored Car, pretty roadster. The red one next to the military jeep is called a Jeepster. And last, but not least, an amphibious transport, of some sort.All this, and less than three miles into my run! Miles 3-5 were nice. Rolling hills, steady pace. I saw more people out walking than I'm used to, and a few more gas stations with bagged pumps, police tape, and 0.00 on the price board. Saw a few people on bikes. One of them wasn't even a teenager.

At 5.5 miles, I made the call home to my team. Then, stopped at the QT to use the restroom and buy a water bottle. The station had gas. And lines. Of cranky people. The pumps were jammed. After leaving the station to continue up Roswell Rd., I was running next to the line of cars for about five minutes. That makes for about a half-mile line, give or take. They were bumper to bumper, blocking drives and side streets. I smiled at a few people. No one smiled back.

The downhill to the river was fanatastic. Hit at a point where I was really dragging. I think I was close to seven miles. Ran across the bridge, turned left and hopped onto the Riverwalk trail that joins Azalea and Riverside Parks. My final 2.5 (or 2.35) along the trail, and met my gang at the dinosaur forest playground at Riverside.

The kids decided I was far too disgusting for a mere shirt change and face wash, so I was driven home. After shower and gatorade, it was off to celebrate with salty, spicy food.

Woo Hoo! My longest run... EVER!

I hear the Silver Comet Trail ride was great on Saturday. I wish I'd been able to make it, but am pretty happy with how the day turned out. I am looking forward to making the trek another day, hopefully not too far in the future. Jett, of Atlanta Intown Cycling, has a slide show of his trip with the official PATH riders, and a ride report.

1 comment:

Jett said...

Congrats on 9.5 miles! I can't remember the last time I've run that far. Actually, that's about how many miles I've run this year!

Sorry you missed the Silver Comet Grand Opening, but we plan another ride on the Comet before the year is out. We'd like to take a family-paced ride of about 30 miles with Rockmart as the turn-around point. Will post details once they firm up.