Tuesday, January 6, 2009

In the (Whiskey) Still of the Night

There were many firsts of the year on this fifth (not that kind of fifth) of January. My first run of 2009. My first run in Sand Run park during the dark of night. My first run in the free Brooks Adrenaline GTS 8 I got from running the Akron Marathon. My first run of the year with Martini, with whom I have not run since the Towpath Marathon. My first discussion with Martini about what challenges may lie ahead in our ongoing running and drinking competition.

Ever since the dark started arriving early I have avoided the parks in favor of lighted and surer-footed streets for my weekday runs. However, Martini invited me to join him last night, and we braved the wooded pathway with only the un-full moon to guide our way.

I had not run since Wednesday and was a bit hesitant to go too far because I knew that my pace with Martini would be faster than my runs have been in the last month. At the outset, we were only going to run four miles, but by the time we reached the turnaround point I decided to push it to six.

I took on the duty of greeting other runners and walkers, doing so well in advance to alert them of our approach. One pair of walkers didn't pay heed to my warning as the one with a headlamp didn't budge from our side of the path until Martini nearly collided with his keg-belly.

Though our speed wasn't blistering (9:48 per mile), we managed a negative split (29:52/28:53) -- something I've been paying more attention to recently. The added wrinkle of conversation at that pace most certainly improved my lung power.

Challenges Ahead
Martini and I have not yet confirmed or set any parameters for the 2009 challenges, but here is a preview.

Summer Solstice Challenge: Redux
June 21 falls on a Sunday. We didn't make it out and back last year as hoped. Perhaps this year we can.

Streaking Consecutive Days of Running
The first one to miss a day of running at least three miles loses the challenge. This will likely be sooner rather than later.

TBD Drinking Challenge
We have to do something. I casually mentioned Mata Hari.

14 comments:

Jess said...

I hope you guys pick a good drinking challenge!

Roisin said...

Yes pick a good one...I might join in from Chicago. Although I'm really not too keen on the absinthe stuff...it just tastes a bit odd.

Al's CL Reviews said...

If it is a beer challenge, I might be able to join you. Liquor, not so much.

joyRuN said...

I can't run/talk at the same time. Even at my usual slow pace, I get so out of breath.

Vanilla said...

Perhaps the "Beer Mile" should be your drinking challenge. One before each lap of the track, fastest to finish 4 laps (and 4 beers) wins.

Glaven Q. Heisenberg said...

I personally think it cheapens beer to tie the quaffing of it to a challenge. But luckily there are beers out there that need to be taken down a peg or two and reminded how much closer they are to urine than beer. So if you do the Vanilla thing, makes sure it's with Heineken or worse.

Xenia said...

I forgot to ask -- was that a picture of the Towpath in yesterday's post?

tfh said...

I think I'd rather streak than streak.

(Pairs well with drinking challenges.)

Know what I mean?

Good luck.

Jess said...

Chose an excellent drinking challenge and drink some on my behalf.

X-Country2 said...

The drinking challenge really is the most important one of them all. Godspeed on that one.

Ted said...

absinthe ???? I ought to try that ! The drinking challenge sounds intriguing to me.

Sarah said...

I think...after I get Cleveland out of the way in May, I might return to the comforting bosom of NE Ohio for the Akron Marathon. I've heard nothing but good things about it. I might as well take advantage before it gets too popular and they stop handing out free pairs of shoes. What do you think?

I love negative splits. I lust after them.

Our neighbors brought me a bottle of Skyy vodka (not my preferred brand, but hey, free booze) for watching their house/shoveling their sidewalk while they were on vacation. Is that a bad sign? Note: find someone you can house/pet-sit for and request payment in the form of alcohol. It's a win-win situation!

Forget absinthe. I challenge you to drink an entire bottle of Unicum before spring.

Zwack! ;)

nwgdc said...

I like the sound of a solstice challenge...except for the fact I'll be running a marathon the day before...

Vava said...

You're going to run 3 miles every day!? That's nuts, no matter how inebriated you are...