I had to run eight miles today. Unlike last week, it was overcast when I woke up. I started to question if I wanted to lace up and actually run with the threatening skies. I am not afraid of rain, I am afraid of lightning.
Several years ago, when I was at a City Cup Softball Tournament in my hometown, it started to rain. I wasn't afraid of rain and didn't think much of lightning back then. The rain really started to come down, so games were delayed and/or called off and the team with the highest score at that point won.
I was talking to my brother, when all of a sudden he said, "Why is your hair sticking up?"
I laughed. My hair was soaking wet. I was sure he was kidding. How could wet hair stick up, right? Several years before, my mother had told us that if our hair starts sticking up in a storm, we are about to be struck by lightning. I thought my brother was just thinking about that conversation and wondered if I would remember it.
After I laughed, he said, "No, I'm serious."
My laughter turned to pure terror. My mother was parked about 10 yards away and her backseat door was wide open. I probably ran faster than I had in a long time and literally dove into her car.
Mom said, "What are you doing?"
When I told her, she agreed that it was a good idea. She was confused as to why I would jump into her car and not have my three young children with me. They were safely hanging out my siblings. I was just trying to insure that they still had a mother on this planet at the end of the day. I believe that I had escaped with my life that day. I could not feel my hair standing up. I would never dream it could stand up, being soaking wet. If I hadn't been talking to my brother, I may no longer be here.
So, that is the back story leading into today's run. Rain, not scary, lightning, very scary....
My older brother was getting ready to head back to Washington after getting to spend some time with us. He had asked what my plans were for the day. I told him I was supposed to run eight miles, but I wasn't sure I would because it looked like it would rain. I also told him I had to go to my daughter's play today. I told him that besides those things I didn't have any plans.
As he was getting ready to leave, he suggested that it would probably be a good time to run, when it was cooler and overcast. I decided that I might as well lace up and get going. It was also at least 10 to 15 degrees cooler than last week. I grabbed my drink of choice "Grape Powerade Zero" and headed out the door.
There were sprinkles, off and on, for about the first three miles. After that, it was consistent rain for the next 4 miles. I was thankful for the rain. Not only did it cool things off, we need rain! We are in the midst of a drought. Lawns are brown. We can only water twice a week for 30 minutes at a time. Any extra rain we get is needed!
I said a quick prayer in my head, thanking our Heavenly Father for the rain, for those reasons. I also include safety in my prayers. To me, today, it meant not getting struck by lightning, and not being attacked on my run, by an animal or a human. I believe I live in a safe area, but sometimes things happen.
I didn't see a single flash of lightning on my run. I am thankful for that. Although, it might have helped me to run faster, I liked the pace I was at. As far as I know, my hair did not stick up. There was not a car I could dive into anyway. Before I left, I let my husband know where I would be running. I think it is important that someone knows where you are.
On another note, drivers don't seem to be as courteous to runners when it is raining as they are when it is burning up hot outside. I had to wait at several crossings (without stop signs or traffic lights) for someone to let me cross the road, or for a break in the traffic. I think that easily added a good three minutes or so to my time. Today's time was 1:42:54. It was better than last week's time, but not as good as I hoped, seeing how I didn't have to stop and fill up a water bottle or anything. I did stop to drink my Powerade, instead of trying to run through it. It seems that I get more in my mouth if I am not trying to run.
Next week is an easy week of running. Next Saturday will be a four mile run. The following Saturday is a ten mile run. We shall see how that goes!