Thursday, December 19, 2013

Day 19 Old and new friends get you through

Today I was too tired to go to the spin class.  Looking at the forecast, there is a chance of cold rain coming this way tonight.  I packed up running clothes hoping to get a run in for lunch instead of lifting.  Mid-morning, my friend Bart said he wanted to run late after an office party at lunch today. After a few texts we settled on 3:00.

I became friends with Bart in the pool in the middle of last winter.  We talked a lot during gaps in the Master's Swim workouts.  Turns out we share the exact birth date. Soon after we talked more in the pool, he decided to turn me into a runner instead of a shuffler by inviting me to do 800 repeats with him on the indoor track.  Those first ones really sucked.  Once summer hit we started running to Lake Michigan, swimming, and running back which Bart termed lunch recess.

Okay, that's enough
We went with relatively light layers given the upper 30's temperature.  He had a stomach full of pulled pork something, beer, etc.. so I had the upper hand.  However, given that he is faster anyway and has take a week of turning his Marcothon into a Loungothon, he had no problem making me work a little. To be honest, for the first time in about a week, I felt great running!  Bart and I did a straight shot to the lake with a loop around Promontory Point (where we swim in warm weather).  On the way back I told him mission accomplished this year.  He has turned me into a runner.

3.24 miles in 28:32 for a avg pace of 8:47

Swans were out in water with floating ice
Some added context for me, I didn't start running, swimming, biking until 4 years ago when I came across off road triathlons.  For the 10 years prior, I lifted weights most days of the week for lunch.  In my own mind I am a weightlifter that has rediscovered the joy of cardio along with the benefit of weight loss.  Before the decade of heavy lifting, I did run for ROTC, Army Reserves, and for fun. Near the beginning of the lifting stint, I met Larry who was hanging sheet metal in the library.  We became friends and he introduced me to powerlifting.  We spent many hours pounding away in the gym and eating breakfast skillets afterwards.  One great memory is doing a two man deadlift competition at the Indiana State Fair.
I think we ended of lifting in the upper 800's, but Larry could have done more with a stronger partner.  Our time together was cut short.  After a workout in early fall of 2001, his stomach was bothering him.  He ended up going to the doctor who diagnosed him with stage IV cancer in the liver and stomach.  Within 2 months he went from deadlifting over 500 lbs to passing at the age of 53.  I think about him sometimes when I get tired on the road or in the pool.  He gave me an old meet shirt that he had organized.  On the back, it said, "Do another set, you can rest when you are dead."  I used that when talking about him when I spoke at his funeral.

So here's to you Larry, I did another Marcothon Run today!  Rest will come later.