Saturday, May 17, 2008

I Can't Believe It's Butter

This story has an interesting twist at the end, so "stick" around.

I ran 18 miles today. Actually 18.1; I want credit for every last step! I was supposed to run Sunday, but we have an ocean swim in the morning and L.A. is having a bit of a heat wave so I figured I would be better off going out early today.

I didn't start as early as I would have liked; it was about 8:45. The first 8 miles or so felt pretty good, but then I started struggling a bit. Things started heating up and it became a pretty rough run. To make matters worse, two of my regular water fountains along the path were dried up. I was literally licking the spout trying to get moisture out of them. Gross, I know, but I was desperate.

Originally I was hoping to finish in 3 hours, give or take, and started to get frustrated when I passed the 3-hour mark with several miles to go. I was pretty miserable both physically and mentally by the time I got back to my car. However, I immediately started feeling better when I drove off and saw the thermometer in my car:

102 degrees.

Now then, was it REALLY 102? I don't know. When I got home I checked the current conditions online and it said Glendale was 97 degrees. Griffith Park should be pretty close to that, and a lot of my running was on open dirt trails that heat up pretty quickly so it probably was pretty close to 100. No wonder I wasn't keeping up with my original pace!

And here was the other good news: I finished in about 3.5 hours. While I was running, I was trying to do the math in my head but the heat must have been throwing me off. In my brain, I thought I was doing a 6-6.5 hour marathon pace. Which means that after a 112-mile bike, I'd be looking at over 7 hours for the Ironman run. That's not terrible, but I was hoping to do better than that and that's why I was feeling so down. Turns out, once I got home and let a calculator do the math, I was on pace to do a 5 hour marathon. I would be THRILLED to do 5 hours in Idaho. I'm predicting closer to 5.5-6, so this hot run today was actually very, very good.

Now for the interesting twist of the story. When I got home, I was exhausted. I was hot, and thirsty, and tired. As I got out of my car I noticed a bag of groceries in the back seat which I forgot to bring in from last night. I had too much to carry already and didn't feel like carrying the whole bag, so I grabbed the one thing which needed to go: the one-pound box of butter.

Now you do the math: 1 pound of butter. Three-and-a-half hours. 100 degrees. I grabbed the box and it exploded in my hand. It was little more than a brick of yellow liquid. I was amazed it managed to maintain its shape in the box at all. It burst all over the seat and continued to pour all over the place as I ran to the garbage can.

I was too tired to deal with it at the time, so I just let it sit, soaking into the cloth seats, for about 45 minutes until I went back out to clean it up. But I suspect that every time it gets hot in my car, I'm going to start smelling cookies baking.

Here's the butter in the back seat, and the trail of butter I left running to the trash can:


Anonymous Smart Dutch's g.f. said...

Oh, P! Licking public water fountains, butter in hot cars---it's all too disgusting to contemplate.

10:17 PM  
Blogger Iradoman said...

What were you doing with a pound of butter? u gotta cut that out of your diet my wanna be Ironman friend! Well u can always be an IronButter LOL

4:15 PM  

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