Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Too Flu and Two Flew - Godiva New Year's Day Run

I get a flu shot every year. I would get a dozen of them if I thought it would actually help. I hate the flu.

So, when the stomach flu began ravaging its way through my family like Genghis Khan storming the steppes of Eurasia, I was a bit irritated. I would have much preferred coal in my stocking for Christmas.

What does this have to do with the Godiva New Year's Day Run, you ask? Everything. And Nothing.

Six days before the New Year's Day Run, both my boys caught the bug. Very soon afterwards, my wife and I caught the bug.  Five days of tag team misery ensued.

Ryan recovered well before I did, but when Friday came and I was still feeling lousy, I had doubts about making the New Year's Day Run. Saturday came and I was feeling better, so I decided to test my legs to see if it would even be possible to run the next day. I nearly passed out after 2 miles. Of course, I should have realized that not eating for 3 days would leave me a bit woozy, but I was woozy from not eating for 3 days, so that thought never crossed my woozy mind. Woozy is such a cool word. Where were we? Oh yeah, the race.

After successfully eating a meal Saturday evening, I woke Sunday morning feeling decent. Tired, but decent. Ryan was still up for the race, and much more excited about it than me, so we headed out to Duke Forest for a 5 mile trail race on New Year's Day.

Springtime in January
My car thermometer said 67F. Crazy for January 1st, even in North Carolina, but I'm not complaining. I would trade pine trees for palm trees almost any day. Ryan and I checked in easily (Godiva races are so well organized!) and sat in the warm sun pinning on our race bibs.

Once again, the Godivans were great with Ryan. Thanks to everyone who smiled at him, talked to him, and cheered him before, during and after the race. He's a shy kid, and small things like that makes a huge difference.

It was also great meeting and talking to several folks who had nice things to say about my little blog and my photos. Thanks for the compliments! And sorry if I seemed to be at a loss for words. I always assume that only about 10 people actually read my pointless blog drivel, so when strangers introduce themselves and say they've read and enjoyed (!!??) my blog, I'm slightly shocked.

I continue to be surprised by the turnout at the Godiva Winter Series events. These Godiva races may be the best kept secret in the Triangle area, but apparently a lot of people are in the know.

Springtime in January
Didn't We Already Do The Misery Run?
The race started and we funneled into a short stretch of single track trail leading into Duke Forest. I had no idea how the run would go for either myself or Ryan. I was still feeling a bit woozy, but was determined to enjoy the run. Ryan was still coughing occasionally, but said he felt fine otherwise. I told Ryan to walk whenever he felt the need, hoping that would be often, for my sake.

It didn't take long for the field to stretch out on the single track.
True to form, Ryan pounded away at the run with his juvenile fartleks and I stumbled along with him. Neither of us was in much of a hurry, although Ryan would leave me behind on all the downhill sections. Generally, we just joked around and enjoyed the race and the company of the other Godivans on a beautiful New Year's Day in Duke Forest.

I really liked the out and back nature of this run.
After about a mile, the hills started. And they never seemed to stop. We ran when we could and walked the rest.

"We have to go back UP this hill?!"

The Cure
Sometimes the cure for feeling bad involves something that feels even worse. By the time Ryan and I closed in on the final mile of the race, I think I had shocked my body back to something resembling normal function. I was no longer exhausted from the flu. Now I was just plain exhausted - but very happy to be alive, and running once again.

Thanks, Godiva!