I spent another eventful weekend hanging with my pal Céline.
Guess what we did?
We climbed to the top of a pyramid.
Céline insists that it's a figurative pyramid, not a literal one. From my point of view, it sure felt like a real life pyramid.
Saturday morning started off the way every Saturday morning has started off since I arrived on the scene.
We got up early.
Céline pulled on her running clothes and clipped me to her sports bra. She headed downstairs and spent some time with Dexter. He got dressed in his special running outfit (a ziplock bag). See, he's not waterproof and gets cranky if he gets wet.
She laid out her Nuun, water, salt tablets, edisks, glucometer and snacks for Doug who was going to meet her en route. She put her left earbud in (right stays out so she can hear the traffic) and strapped on her Garmin.
Out the door we went. The first Saturday we ran together, Céline ran 18k. Last weekend she ran 20k. I guessed she was running 22k this time and I was right. (Fitbits are smarter than they look you know!)
I have to say that it's a heck of a lot easier when I know how far we're going before we leave.
I settled in for the ride and got ready to enjoy the scenery and enjoy a long chat with Dex.
Céline started off the way she usually does. She ran well, strong and consistent. But she was slower than usual so I peaked my head out to see what was going on.
I tucked myself right back in again, shivering and terrified.
She was running straight into a wind tunnel. Directly from Alaska. It was incessant and freezing. It took my breath away. Head down, she stubbornly carried on, straight into it, for 8k. Finally we reached the point where we turned out of it for a while. Things immediately quieted and she sped up again.
Doug met us at 11k for the first pitstop. After a quick drink, he asked Céline where she wanted to stop next. "Meet me at 3rd and 8th. I'm heading into another wind tunnel and I want to get it done before I stop again."
The next 3k were terrible. It might have been faster to walk. Instead of running a kilometre in 6:15 or 6:20 she was running them in 7:40. I felt so bad for her but I was shaking too much to be any help. Dexter was crying. We held on for dear life, hoped she'd make it and prayed that we didn't blow away in the process.
She made it! She stopped for a drink, a blood sugar check and a snack and then headed home. The rest of the trip felt easy after that last stretch. I had no idea the wind could blow like that. And I had no idea that people actually ran in that kind of weather.
When we got home, Céline opened the door, smiled at Doug and said "I made it to the top of the pyramid!".
"What the eff is she talking about?" I whispered to Dexter.
"She's training for her half marathon" he explained. "She has been adding mileage every weekend for two months now. Today was her longest run. Now she starts decreasing her distance for the next few weeks to rest and recover for the race. It's called tapering. She thinks of it as climbing up a pyramid. She's made it to the top - now it gets easier."
I thanked Dex for his wisdom (he has been with her for over six months now so he's know what's what.
I climbed a pyramid on the weekend.
What did YOU do?