Rash Ramblings

A runner once, an explorer always!

Day Six…

Every morning I run I am formulating what I am going to write while I am on the run. I want to record what I was thinking, but even more I want to have said something that is useful to someone else. I started these runs because I have a goal to place in the top ten of my age group at the next Austin American-Statesman sponsored Capitol 10,000. The tenth place finisher in my age group last year ran a chip time of 42:55. Back when I was running my best I ran some 10Ks in the 33:00’s, so I definitely know the potential is there. I take my steps slowly now knowing I will increase the intensity at an increasing rate as the race draws near. My biggest step has been to get my body use to the routine and movement of running regularly.

On the run today I was going over important things to monitor while on the run. I try to make sure I am relaxed – shoulders are down, hands are open and relaxed, jaws are loose (you don’t want to be gritting your teeth) and also that I keep a smooth stride. I also have running through my mind something one of  the runners I used to run with said. His name is Greg Lautenslager and all of us at Tech that ran with him were pushed more just by around him while training. He said, and this quote may not be exact, that a coach of his once said that “you must run to win and the rest will take care of itself.’ I don’t know that I ever thought that way. I always tried to do MY best, but did I sell myself short by having a preconceived notion of what my best was? I think if I had consciously had that thought in mind I might have done better.

I will go into this endeavor with that thought in mind. It is time to step it up. I will not let my mind hold me back. I say I will aim to be in the top ten, but I really strive to win my division. Now as I wind this down, I look back in an excerpt from my journal to day six of  my bike ride in 1984 from Durango, Colorado back to Texas. :

Thursday September 13, 1984

I left my camp in the river bed headed for Vega. It was just barely light when I started (7:07 am)

A shot from my campground under the bridge.

I think the ride from Channing to Vega was the toughest so far…no matter whether I was going uphill or downhill I had to pedal. The wind was blowing in my face…and at times 20 -30 miles an hour. It was also about 93 – 95 degrees and the sun was beaming down on me. I was thinking to myself of seeing how the ride from Hereford to Lubbock was and if it wasn’t any better – I might take the bus to Abilene.

I made it to Vega about 11:15…thank God. I stopped at a the grocery store and bought some snacks…chocolate milk, pineapple cinnamon rolls, bananas, and an orange. I went across the street to the courthouse lawn and sat under a tree and ate. Vega was a nice town though there wasn’t a whole lot there. I was heading out of town and stopped at a gas station to fill my water bottles…I also rested a little more.

I headed on to Hereford. It was not nearly as bad there. I got up some speed for a while…then the wind picked up again and I ran into some uphill. The sun was really hot and the trees along the road were about 15 miles apart.

It was good to get to Hereford (about 3:15 pm). I headed to a friend’s dad’s house…… I knocked on the door and one of his younger sisters opened the door and she didn’t recognize who I was…at first she thought I was the yard boy. (Pretty funny as it turns out) His dad came home about 5:30 or 6:00 and he took us out to eat at K-Bob’s. It was great I had steak and shrimp.

It was great to see them again… …His younger sister talked me into riding into Lubbock with her (didn’t take much). God answers prayer! We got into Lubbock late…

I stayed in Lubbock a couple of days so I won’t add another excerpt again until the 16th. 18:04.30

Heat, ma’am! it was so dreadful here, that I found there was nothing left for it but to take off my flesh and sit in my bones.  ~Sydney Smith, Lady Holland’s Memoir

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