Sunday, April 09, 2006

Storms and the Tough Runs that Follow them

Hey guys!! Thanks to all the people who have emailed and left comments wondering if we're OK following all the storms that came through here Friday. It was quite the active weather day! All week the weatherpeople had been saying to expect strong storms on Friday. How do they know so many days ahead?? Anyway, on Friday they were saying the storms would start in the evening and run through the night and clear by Saturday morning. That's really all I care about since we do our long runs on Saturday am! They were also calling them supercells - saying that it was comprised of lots of small bands of storms, versus large, long bands of rain, meaning that the likelihood of some of them combining to create big ass storms was pretty likely. Friday morning came and so did the clouds. By afternoon everyone at work was already talking about the radar and how the storms were starting to develop. To further complete things Brent's department was moving around within the office, and since they're the only group staying in the same spot they were rebuilding their area. His whole department got to leave at noon on Thursday and didn't have to come in until 9 on Friday. Long story short, the idiot contractors screwed something up and wired things backwards. So when they "flipped the switch" a bunch of computer blew, in several departments. One group was immediately sent home. These people don't do much to begin with so it was no great loss to the company. Around 2:30 Brent's department was also sent home. All the ripples of "no fair" immediately swept through the company. My department had plenty of power, but people were immediately whining to go home. Huh?? Then our crack Sales and Marketing department decided they deserved to go home. Why not? They're overpaid and aren't required to do anything, so screw the fact that a customer might call with a question. It started to get cloudy and our computers were flickering on and off all afternoon. It really didn't look too bad. Then, right at 4:30 when it was time for me to go home, it was raining in buckets!! By this point several tornadoes had already swept across the northern part of Nashville, and Brent had pointed out to me that it was the front story on Cnn.com. I had the radar up and a we were right in the middle of a bright section of the radar. I had just IM-ed Brent that it really only looked like heavy rain and I was ready to GO and he "yelled" back at me not to go anywhere, that it was hailing. Blah, I headed into my boss's office to look out a window and as soon as I walked in there the rain was blowing parallel to the ground (thanks to straight line winds) and it started hailing. So, I waited around a minute or two until the rain slowed down, showed my boss how to pull up the radar (seriously, I thought everyone knew how to do that) and when I returned to my desk my IM was flashing wildly and Brent was calling me on my cell. We were right in-between storms and he told me to leave NOW. It was perfect timing - the interstate was crawling at 25 mph and right when I pulled into the garage heavy rain #2 started and more hail was right behind it. All told I think we had 4 episodes of hail that evening, and it was still thundering and lightening when we went to bed at 11pm. The weather people had broadcasting interrupted from somewhere around 2 pm until 8 pm! It's very exhausting to watch one storm after another approach, and to know that junk is going to happen all night. We ended up staying home and cooking dinner, so it was a "nice" night in. We were really lucky on the south side of town. Quite a few people died on the north side and some of the photos in the press are really amazing (some of the hail in those pics are ENORMOUS!). Last week was NOT a good weather week in Tennessee. Hopefully this week will be much better!

Saturday am we ran over at Percy Warner Park. This is a great park, def the best in the city. The main problem is that it's completely on the opposite side of town, and takes us about 30-40 minutes to get to. By the time you go and come back you really could've already done your run. But, this is the king of hilly places and beautiful scenery so it is worth it if you have the time. We got up around 8:30 and headed out the door an hour later. The thermometer SAID 57 but it felt much cooler. It was cloudy, dreary, and still misting rain. I wore a short sleeve tech shirt and shorts, and grabbed a light jacket for post run on my way out the door. Thank goodness!! We got out of the car and the wind was icy and brutal. I decided to run with my jacket! The park was crowded, this is a local fave place to run, walk, and be seen in general. It's in a GORGEOUS part of town with beautiful old home, and beautiful new homes. We call this the "old money" part of town. These people are just plain rich. A lot of them have fabulous old cars, the really cool old Mercedes and other things that just scream class. When we pulled in an old lady was walking her little frou-frou dog who was wearing a little raincoat and matching hat!

We started out and instantly started up a hill. Everything was so beautiful. All the leaves are just starting to bud and everything looked so clean and spring-like following the rain. My Garmin lasted 150 feet and then never could figure out where we were! Thank goodness Brent has a foot-pod! It's nice to be able to average the length of your run using both technologies. One of us should surely be right! There were tons of other runners and walkers on the path. We had talked about also running on the trails, but since we only have 1 pair of shoes we didn't want to get them completely muddy! We ended up following some signs for Team Excel. We weren't sure how long their group run was that day, but we hoped it wasn't a 20-miler! After about 3 miles their signs disappeared so we started following the signs for our local running club. Then the massive hills started. We'd curve up and curve up and curve up. Then you'd finally get some downhill but it was usually so steep you couldn't exactly relax and enjoy it. Right around 7 miles we spotted some wild turkeys so we stopped to take some pics and I took my jacket off. The wind was brutal, but when it wasn't blowing I was burning up! As soon as I took my jacket off the wind picked up again. I was so miserable. Between the cold, dreary weather and a really terrible week at work I was so dead. I really wanted to enjoy myself, especially since we don't make it there often. We weren't even running with our music, we were enjoying nature and each other. Brent was the best training partner ever that day. He was really upbeat and constantly cracking jokes. In the middle of one massive uphill we met some walkers coming down and he asked them how much further til a downhill! He'd shout out other funny things to bikers who passed us and then curse them as being lazy or on wheels once they were gone. Hopefully I can be such a good motivator for him on his next "off" day. I would've never survived if it wasn't for him! Around mile 9 we started up an incline so steep that someone had named the hill after someone else and written it in chalk on the pavement! You know it's bad if it has a name! The views from the top were beautiful, and there was usually a wooden bench at the top, too. A wooden bench has never looked so good! We knew the main loop was 11.2 miles, so after the last hill at Mile 9 we knew we'd be coming back down. There were still some other small ups but we knew we almost had it! I've never been so happy to see the giant stairs! We were able to pick up some more steam towards the end and finished twelve miles in 1:49. Not bad considering the uphills were brutal and the downhills were too (at times). We were SO glad to have survived! Afterwards we took some silly photos on the stairs and of course I had to do my impression of stupid JoDee Messina and her photo shoot for Runners World. It was SO cold! By the end of our run the temp had dropped to 47. I had no idea it was one of those dropping temp days!









We did some errands afterwards and then headed home to clean up! All in all it was a great run and I'm really glad we did it. This Saturday we plan to run there again, for 14 miles. The next week we'll be doing 8, the following weekend is the Country Music Half and then the Flying Pig Half. So, if we plan to get some more kick butt hills in next week (this Sat) is it!

Hope you all had great weekends!!!

Rachel

Exercise-
Fri - 1 mile am walk with Pippin
Sat - 12 mile run with Brent
Sun - 3 mile recovery run, 20 mins yoga focus:abs, lots of yardwork (raking for about 3 hours!!!)

20 Comments:

At 8:28 PM, Blogger Dawn - Pink Chick said...

Sucks about the storms but glad all is okay. That looks like a great place to run and well worth the drive.

 
At 8:30 PM, Blogger Joe said...

Hey I saw this on your sidebar "February 11, 2006 - Nashville Predators FANGtastic 5K - 26:45". Are you a Preds fan? They're freaking awesome this year. They've had the Canucks number all year. Good luck in the playoffs.

 
At 8:34 PM, Anonymous Shalini said...

Glad you guys are okay! Sounds like it was quite an experience.

 
At 8:40 PM, Blogger lainb said...

looks like a cool place!

 
At 9:01 PM, Blogger robtherunner said...

What a great place for a run. Glad you made it through the storms safely. I thought about you guys when I saw the news.

 
At 11:21 PM, Blogger Darrell said...

That looks like a wonderful place to run. It is so cool that you have each other to depend on.

 
At 4:19 AM, Blogger susie said...

I thought about you all during the storm. Glad everything turned out ok for you guys.

 
At 4:38 AM, Blogger Danny said...

you guys really are the dynamic duo!!

 
At 6:13 AM, Blogger PLANET3RRY said...

glad to hear that you were okay... we had some of the rough stuff but not as bad as you all had. Luckily, most storms lose their strength over the plateau and then realy die when the hit the valley/Smokies.

Those pictures are amazing! Glad that you could still run the next day.

 
At 6:44 AM, Blogger Running Jayhawk said...

That hail looked insane. I'm glad you folks are in one piece. Pippin had to have been going nuts!

And your hill run rocked!! Way to go :) I can't believe the nashville m'thon is almost here.

True story...you and Brent made an appearance in my dream last night. It was WEIRD.

 
At 7:07 AM, Blogger mouse said...

the park looks gorgeous! and I absolutely love the pictures of you guys posing. too freaking funny...

 
At 8:18 AM, Blogger Hilda said...

I thought of you when I heard the news, anouncing tornados.
Hope the weather improves!

Well running trails after heavy rain might cause mayor damage to your shoes... by the way, how do you wash them?

 
At 8:37 AM, Blogger D said...

Great time on a tough course! I love your photos! Even though it is tough, it looks like a cool course to run.

How far are you from St. Louis? You should do that race - I didn't expect it to be so nice. You'll have to let me know so I can plan on doing it again too.

 
At 10:03 AM, Blogger Cliff said...

That is one gorgeous place to run..especially the pics with the stones stairs and what not..

yes, us cyclists are a lazy bunch :)...no running for me in the weekend.j.ust riding for wee hours.

 
At 12:45 PM, Blogger Robb said...

Another great batch of photos. I especially love the natural stone stairs.

Good to hear you are safe and sound. Great post Rae!

 
At 1:20 PM, Anonymous Audrey said...

man, you haven't gotten a break from the weather this season!! stay safe! and good strong run this past weekend!

 
At 4:32 PM, Blogger Michele said...

We were at a restaurant Friday night when the storms hit. All of a sudden some guy walks in and says “Hey everyone, there are some pretty strong winds out there, I think we should all move away from the windows.” Luckily the really bad storms missed us.
Wish Nashville wasn’t an hour away, I need some good hill training and new routes.

 
At 5:22 PM, Blogger Anne said...

Wow, such pretty photos following a great description of some ugly weather. I'm going to stop bitching about all our rain.

 
At 5:52 PM, Blogger Scott said...

Gorgeous scenery Rae. Sounds like you and Brent really enjoyed your runs - isn't that what it has to be about?.

 
At 12:53 PM, Anonymous angie's pink fuzzy said...

WOW on the weather!

That park looks fanTAStic!

 

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