Over the next couple of weeks, I will post some highlights and favorite memories of my 15 year running career. Here is one of those stories:
In September 2005, I ran the Pier to Peak half marathon. It is the most difficult race I have run. Ever. The event takes place at sea level and makes a 4,000 foot elevation gain to one of the highest peaks overlooking our town. It is absolutely grueling. So, naturally - I ran it again in 2009 and 2010.
The first year that I ran Pier to Peak was my best effort out of the three races, finishing with a time of 3:16:53. That doesn't seem too fast - but in 2005 I was running a personal best of 2:05 for a half marathon, if that gives any indication to the intensity of the course.
Mr Doll was out of town, so I had asked My Best Girl spend the night. The plan was that I would leave at 5am and she would drive up after the run later in the morning, and pick me up the top of the mountain with Boy and Girl Doll.
The kids worked my friend pretty hard and weaseled a carbonated soda out of her to drink during the ride up. What makes this event so memorable wasn't the run itself, but the ride home when Boy announced that he didn't feel good - and then threw up all over himself and the back seat. Both kids were crying and Girl Doll yelled, "Why did you have to throw up?! IT SMELLS SO BAD!" My Best Girl pulled over to the side of the mountain road and we all fell out of the car from the stench.
While all the other runners wound their way down the mountain past us and onto parties where they celebrated their nubile bodies and added another notch on their Pier to Peak belt - I stood on the side of the road, quickly stripping Boy Doll out of the vomit clothes and into a dry, spare change of clothes I kept in the car...you know, in case of the apocalypse or times like this. I dumped almost a whole container of baby powder on the floor mats and back seat which seemed like a good idea at the time - because who doesn't like the smell of baby powder? Instead of covering the odor, it just made everything noxious.
Dude. Nothing kills a runner's high faster than having to deal with vomit. We drove the rest of the way home in silence...punctuated by the occasional dry-heave.