Runner’s Log: Day 1 – Don’t Go Chasing Water Fountains

Captain’s log. Stardate 01172016. We have entered a singularity known as Marathon’s Landing on a critical mission to cure the crew that have been infected by a virus brought on by the Egotarians. The precious resources that can be found on the Landing will be our salvation. The landing party will need extra preparation for Marathon as surface conditions will be difficult to manage without proper training.

Ok that was fun, but enough of the Star Trek tomfoolery, this is my journal in figuring stuff out as I attempt to do my first full marathon ever. I have till August, but I need to train to build into that kind of mileage, for my previous half marathons I’ve gotten away with no real training except for my mind, but I’m skeptical that I can make 26.2 with brainpower alone. As of now, I feel kind of like a phony because I hate running, and this will be mostly a test in patience and ego. Holden Caulfield feel free to hate me, I’m pulling an Ackley.

Today would be my first attempt at cardio since the great biking adventure. Decided to run on the bike path near my house that I found a couple weeks back via Google Maps. In my head today would be about measuring distances and trying to get a steady pace. When I run I tend to sprint and recover, but I’m not sure that this technique will work through 26.2 miles.

San Tomas Aquino Creek

San Tomas Aquino Creek

I still end up sprinting and recovering. Old habits are hard to break. Starting out I’m not sure how far I want to go yet, but I thought around 3 miles would be ok to starting distance. Meanwhile I listened to Montgomery’s EP on these awesome bluetooth speakers that were the best exercise bluetooth headphones via Wirecutter. Wirecutter entices me to spend way more money than I should. The EP album I discovered via someone I follow on Instagram which I detail here.

It was a cloudy morning and cold, so I decided to wear long sleeves, a down vest and thermal run pants, but this ended up being a bad idea. I was just too warm the entire time. Since I had only planned to run about 3 miles, I thought I didn’t need to bring water, but once I started I realized I hadn’t drank anything before I left the house. Fail.

Ended up stopping a bunch to take photos, as when I was biking this path I was too lazy to stop to remember the view. Stepped off path briefly into the riverbed because it reminds me of all those street racer movies. Here I underestimated the height of the water and end up soaking my feet. I mean, ahhhh so refreshing.

Pretty San Tomas bike path

Cold feet

Continue on and I’m starting to see Levi Stadium in the distance, location of the 50th Super Bowl. The other day someone mentioned that they were already digging up the soccer field next to the stadium to set up the press area and a lot of banners were already up. I decide then that the stadium would be where I’d stop today, I could check out what they have set up so far and they would probably have a water fountain.

I’m basically wheezing because my lungs are out of shape and this is the first longer run I’ve done since the Nike Women’s Half last year. Get to the stadium and ask a security guard if there are any fountains nearby, and she replies “There are none at the Stadium, unless you passed any along the way.” Ughhhhh.

Earlier in the week I was listening to a new podcast that Laurie mentioned I might like 99% Invisible. It happens to also be based out of the Bay Area. Laurie has a knack for picking out podcast suggestions for me including Serial, and anything from Gimlet Media, so I decided to try this as well. Ironically enough the first episode I listened to talked about public water fountains, and how they used to be the social scene in London back in the day, here’s the ep if you’re curious. My mind wandered to this episode and how it’s a travesty that there are no public water fountains at a huge new stadium that would be hosting Super Bowl 50 no less.

I’m snapped back from London times and parties around a public fountain to this reality, as the extremely nice guard offers…

Guard: You can have my extra bottle of water.
Me: Oh I just couldn’t take your water. I’d feel bad. Don’t worry I’ll try to find something.

I take off and head closer to the stadium and take a couple photos of the Super Bowl decorations that are already up. A lot of construction is still going on. In the back of my mind, were The Promises 2016, “Jessica, accept help from others! You have already failed your own promise for gosh-sake,” that was shortly followed up by “Go easy on yourself JC, it’s hard to change old habits, do your best.” OK secondary voice in my mind, I like you!

Without any water fountains I decide it’s time to go home and I turned around. When I’m nearing the guard, she sees me and gets up from her chair, bottle of water in hand and I beam at her. Second chances are the best. I basically gush thank yous at her profusely and am about to take off when I turn around and give her the biggest hug.

Aquafina from the Aqua Angel

Aquafina from the Aqua Angel

I have a new spring in my step as I run towards home. Rectified previously falling into the bad habit of refusing help and random acts of kindness rock me in such a way, it’s like people are out there just to offer you their energy, love and an Aquafina bottle of water.

Captain’s log, supplemental. The natives of Marathon Landing have been kind so far. The cure is still a trek away, but the journey… oh the journey… it’s been kind to us so far. Feeling hopeful.

Days till Marathon: 221
Mileage: ~6 miles
Pace: 11:35/mi
Met Along The Way: Lovely water goddess of Marathon Landing aka Levi’s Stadium Security Guard

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