Wednesday, June 13, 2007

The Great Midwest Relay - Part II

If you live in a "normal" city or suburb you probably don't get to run like I do. I live in the FAR "NW suburbs" (...and I use the word suburb loosely). We have no street lights, speed limits are "suggestions" and stop signs are "only if people are around". So when I run at night I have lights, flashing lights, and a vest (seen above). Running at night with the only sound the nocturnal animals and the far cry of coyotes is a different experience and sometimes more scary than running in a bad neighborhood in the city because you never know what type of animal you will see next. In 2007, I've seen beaver, racoon, muskrat, opossum, field mice, geese, deer, ducks, phesant, wild turkey, coyote, cat, dog, and snapping turtle. No such experience in the GMR!


My second run was in Milwaukee. I had to run from West Allis, WI to Washington Park along the Root River Parkway (which is beautiful by the way). The second run was a sprint for me, only about 2 miles. Sprinting in the pitch black darkness at 1:35 am not being able to see ankle breaking potholes or undulations in the road is a bit intimidating...unless you run that way every day.


I blistered the second run in 11:35. I almost caught the team ahead of us cutting 90 seconds out of their two minute lead. Chocolate milk is verified as a great recovery drink!

We drive off to Racine, WI to get about 90 minutes of sleep on the floor of a church there. We are greeted by one of the parishoners kind enough to share their church with 1,800 sweaty runners. Up at about 4 am, we are back to racing and enjoying the sunrise over the lake. It is views like this that make this race.




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