I ran in my third race this morning. This one was here in Palo Alto. I thought I had signed up for a 5k, but when I got there I found out that the race was actually a 5 mile race, an 8k. My initial reaction was “oh no!” because I had never run 5 miles before — the longest run I’ve done in as long as I can remember is about 4.5 miles, and that was on a day when I was really feeling good and motivated. So I was worried. But then I just sort of said “what the hell?” and went to the starting line.
I started slow, knowing that I would be going 2 miles farther than what I’m used to. Slow and steady, like the tortoise, that’s me. I passed the 2 mile marker in 23 minutes…11:30 per mile and about 40-50 seconds slower than my usual pace. However, I kept plodding along, and I think I must have accomplished one of those “negative splits” that you hear runners talking about — where you run the second half of the race faster than the first half — because I finished in a flat 55 minutes, 11 minutes per mile.
So my first try at the 8k distance went swimmingly, and gives me a lot of hope that pretty soon I’ll be able to run a 10k! That would be cool.
In other news, it’s already been a good phone connection day. It’s only 1:00 and I’ve already talked to both Carter and Christina. I still owe Daniel and Becca call-backs.
I always find the Olympics so inspiring. I find myself glued to the TV for sports that I usually ignore, like short track speed skating and Nordic combined skiing. Yesterday I watched the entire US-Russia hockey game and was on the edge of my seat for the entire third period as the players went frantically for the puck…and can’t wait to watch the gold medal game tomorrow. How cool it must be to be an Olympian!
Today has just been the best day. The race and talking to friends like I already mentioned…then later on I watched Moulin Rouge, which I have been wanting to see for a while, and I also talked to Chris, and then Neal called and I talked to him and promised to go to Flicks tomorrow night with him. And then Kristof called and asked if I wanted to go see a chamber ensemble from Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields perform. Well of course I did, so he and I headed to the auditorium for that, which was wonderful, and then we headed over to Tressider where we met up with Nick and Emily and Valerie and half of Breakers — Daniel, Sean, Michael, Alex, Ana — for a swing dance put on by the graduate student union. It was great! I was amazed that someone asked me to dance every single song…I had to purposely sit out a few times just because I needed a rest! I also met some interesting people…a crazy Russian guy, and a cute French guy named Yoann. (What an interesting name!) And Nick taught me Charleston and the shim sham, even though I am not really very good at either so far. I will have to practice.
Just a fantastic day. It’s like everyone I know, and some people I don’t, conspired to make me feel really popular and help me have a wonderful day. And it worked. I guess it’s just an ideal example of one of those days when “everything seems to go your way…” Ahh. I almost don’t want to go to bed! However, I am exhaused. G’night.