|Redwood Regional Park|
In the wooded mountains of a re-gional park located on the skyline of Oakland. In that time, forty-three stories were climb-ed. Yes, forty-three.
The goal was a run of 10 miles (16.09 km). The week before I ran 8.5 miles at Lake Chabot. The extra 4.2 miles run on Wednesday hap-pened because I got lost, turned around. The twisty paths in the forested Oakland hills caused that.
At the beginning, after the first fifth of a mile, I no desire to run. But the following quote inspired me:
Motivated by this truth, I chugged ahead, ignoring the exhaustion assaulting me."In the conflict between the stream and the rock that lays within, the water wins. It overcomes the stone, round-ing it. Not by brute strength but through perseverance."
A harrier once again. A folded map of this regional park was in a pocket of my shorts. The rangers said the distance of the planned trek was eight miles.
My Fitbit, using GPS declared otherwise. After running and climbing hills for three+ hours in a trip that I thought would be shorter, I was wiped out, physically.
I had a 4:30 p.m. session with a client. My calculations for my time in the park were wrong. During the journey, I became disoriented. And hot, thirsty.
|Canyon Trail. It goes straight uphill. Ugh.|
It was a mistake. A dangerous one, too. Cars whizzed by this twisty curvy road. They did not expect a crazy man to be running on that road, especially during the hottest portion of the day.
I pushed on. I would hear the roar of a car zooming up the moun-tain, behind me. When the squealing wheels reached me, I'd stop. I climbed the inclined dirt shoulder of the road. Like a bullfighter, I watched as the car scrape by, making sure the car did not catch my hip.
The astonished looks of the drivers---as they confronted me, con-veyed, "What are you doing??" Their looks met mine, filled with fear. I dreamed of flying. But, soaring because a car smacked into me was not the way I envisioned. That day I did my best to not be roadkill.
|Not only believing, but in having perseverance.|
I reversed course.
The run was sap-ping my strength. I hadn't run ten miles in more than ten years. The 91 F. (32.77 C) degree heat made matters worse.
I had to return to my car. This was not like running around the block. I was seven miles from where I started. Re-entering the park, I ran through the hilly woods towards my car.
I prayed when reaching the intersection of Skyline and Joaquin Miller. "God, please help. I need a ride," I pleaded. "I can't run much more." I had miles to go after already running 13.95 miles.
After my peti-tion, I ran 565 steps, more. One-fifth of a mile, uphill, accord-ing to Fitbit. Then it happened. A car pulled over. Its lights flashing. The back door opened. A miracle!
I pumped my arms wildly, breathing rapidly, as I raced to the car. I pulled the door wide. A woman was stepping out. Her husband was dropping her off at work. No miracle, here.
I was mistaken. My heart was not only beating wildly, but crushed.
The couple was Hispanic. I spoke to them in Spanish. The woman said her husband would help. I was relieved better than having a cool drink of water on that blistering day! He took me 3.1 miles (5 km)---uphill---to where my car was.
|This can happen even when you are running.|
Since then, I ran a race Sat-urday, 9/10/15. It was a 5K, 3.1 miles with hills. My consistent running---190 miles (305.7 km) a month, in the hills---since May, paid off. I came in fifth, beating out others in their 20's, 30's and forties. I passed two in their twenties, in the last thirty yards.
I got a medal. I'll fill you in with the details when there's time. Many lessons learned while racing in Concord, California.