Let Me Feel Your Kick. Bam! Bam! That’s My Boy…

I’m driving Nicole crazy with my latest craze. At night, when I’m stretching and doing my floor exercises, I’m watching the Simpsons. Now I want to see the movie.

So much has happened since completing the 100 mile run. Seems like so long ago yet it was just 10 days ago. Like so many things, the moment passes and I’m already moved on to the next new thing. I allow so little time to enjoy the moment. We were back at work right after the race and it took a couple days for my body to return to a state of normality. I had a very hard time falling asleep. My calves would either twitch and itch or my mind just couldn’t relax. It was all very weird. I was exhausted and wanted to sleep but just couldn’t settle everything down.

On Thursday, I visited the Clif Bar headquarters in Berkley along with some of the other Pace Team runners. I’ve read about companies like Clif Bar, but seeing the company in person was an eye-opening experience. Their mission is to sustain the company and product, sustain the employee and sustain the environment. They are a very “green” company. With about 150 employees, more than a dozen ride their bikes to work. Some employees had bikes at their desks while others parked theirs in the warehouse. You can also bring your dog to work. All of the company vehicles are bio-diesel. All of their products are organic and they strive for using all recyclable products, from wrappers for the energy bars to office paper. They will loan an employee $5000 towards the purchase of a environmental friendly automobile, then forgive the loan. You are paid to use the company gym for at least 30 minutes a day (not including lunch and breaks). The company also provides personal trainers. They highly encourage employees to work in the community and work on community products. Walking around and chatting with some of the employees, I couldn’t help but notice a nice balance between work and health and community. We even had a chance to meet the owner, Gary, who was working in the warehouse putting together some boxes.

On Friday, I headed down to San Francisco for the San Francisco Marathon expo. I was still feeling really tight from the 100 mile run and worried I wasn’t going to make my run on Sunday. So I rode my bike to the city to stretch out my limbs and try to loosen things up. It was a slow ride and I flatted 3 times. I had to abort my ride in Sausalito and take the ferry into the city to make the expo and make sure I was in the booth for the afternoon.

Nicole drove to Larkspur after work and took the ferry into the city where we met for dinner. We also had dinner with Julie Fingar who was directing the marathon. I had run with her the weekend before and so the 3 of us met a few times over the weekend.

Saturday morning we had a team run at 6:15 AM, just a nice easy run along the bay. I chatted with Scott and then with Darris about his upcoming endurance run. The rest of the day was spent going back and forth from the hotel to the expo for one thing or another and Nicole met Jodi and Sterling for lunch. At the team meeting that night, we made some adjustments. Instead of me running the 1:30 half marathon pace group, Darris would lead that group and I would float for the 3:00 or 3:10 full marathon, just in case one of them needed to drop. This made me feel a little better but not much. Worst case, I would need to run about 14 miles at a 3 hour marathon pace. Best case, everybody would be doing just fine and I could just float in at whatever pace I wanted.

So the alarm went off at 4:45 AM and I headed down to the start. I watched the marathon start, wished Julie, Chris (the 3:00 pace leader) and Jack (the 3:10 pace leader) all good runs. Then watched Scott (the 3:30 pace leader) take off. At the point I needed to head to the 12 mile mark by bus.

I arrived at the 12 mile mark just before the leader passed. I must admit, it was nice to watch a race from the sidelines. I could empathize with the runners and appreciate their red faces, but it was really nice just to clap my hands and encourage them without having to go through the effort. Sure enough, right on pace, Chris came around the corner with a decent group. He gave me the thumbs up but his only comment was “This is a tough course” and he runs by me. 5 minutes later, there is no sign of Jack. He looked to be running a bit late. A minute later, he appeared and shook his head as he approached. I was enjoying my view and my first reaction was to shake my head back at him and say “No, you are doing great. Keep going!” But he says he is not feeling well and he needs me to take over. So at mile 12, I jumped in and ran to the finish. Through Golden Gate Park, I lost most of my group because we needed to make-up a minute or so and there is just a constant climb through the park. Leaving the park, I had two solid runners who stayed with me through mile 24. At mile 25, I had just one but we caught another runner from behind and they both finished strong.

Nicole met me at the finish and I was drenched from the thick fog/drizzle of the morning. I headed over and grabbed a hot mocha from Starbucks to warm me up. We hung out for awhile and watched some of the other runners and pacers finish. Chris had come in at 3:04 due to cramps in the latter miles but I think all the other pacers hit their times. Julie finished in about 3:45 and after that the 3 of us grabbed lunch then Nicole and I checked-out then took the ferry back to Larkspur.

Dylan is growing and kicking constantly. He must be running out of room in there. Today the fire alarm went off in the kitchen and he gave Nicole a big kick right away, letting her know he didn’t appreciate that sound.
OK, I’m off now. One of our clients at work is converting and it looks to be going OK. I may hear the phone ring at 3 AM but I’ll settle for a few hours of sleep. Maybe I’ll catch a few minutes of the Simpsons before heading to bed.

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