Friday, May 8, 2009

The perils of drinking soapy water

Last night (Thursday) I went running at my favorite location, Patapsco Park’n’Ride.  I had to work late because I was waiting on stuff that people were supposed to submit at 9am….ah, I don’t want to rant about my work.  Breathe….ok, back to my blog post.

So anyhow, I roll up at 7pm, and I know I have about an hour before the sun goes down, do I do my favorite 1 hour trail.

One thing I immediately notice, is that I don’t see anybody.  WTF is everyone?  Perhaps they are concerned about the damage their feet and wheels might do to the trails?  I normally would be in that camp, but after several days of rain, and several days more forcasted, I get like a crack-head, and I just gotta get my trail fix.

So I’m having a great run, all by myself, then I see this guy prancing around the muddy trail with gleaming white shoes, choosing each step with extreme care, and I just had to laugh.  Patapsco, even in the driest conditions, is not the place you go if you want to keep your shoes clean.  It was really weird seeing a grown man do that.

So I keep going, and I water my favorite tree at the top of the first hill.  Dogs seem to like that tree, too, so I gotta make sure they know who’s boss.  Territory marking is essential.

I’m having a wonderful run, then all of a sudden, I remember the water glass at work, and maybe I should have been more diligent in rinsing the soap out of it.  Yikes.  Drinking soapy water isn’t a great idea.  I don’t advise it.

So the second half of the run, as the sun marches inexorably towards the horizon, I am focusing more urgently on holding back the turtleheads.

Whenever you find yourself in this situation, you start to take stock of what you have, and what could be used in case of “emergency”.  Many people joke about using socks as TP, but after you have been running in the mud for an hour, I really don’t advise it, especially once Poision Ivy season starts.  Some advocate using your underwear, and leaving it behind.  That assumes you HAVE underwear.  Some bring along TP, but that involves way too much pre-planning, and besides, if it rains, it won’t be very useful.  Using leaves on the ground may be the best option, but you have to KNOW what kind of leaves they are, or you may be in for a few weeks of extreme discomfort.

The best case is to just hold it in, and tough it out, if you can.  Which is what I did.  I almost wiped out a couple times on the way back, as the light was fading, but I made it back ok.

The NerdWatch says I did 1:01, 5.something miles at 11:00 per mile.  It’s hard to go fast at Patapsco.  But I spent 900 calories, so it was all good.

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