Sunday, September 21, 2008

My Birthday!!

Yesterday was a very interesting, but fulfilling day for me. To set it up, I have been a bit under the weather since Wednesday night, and have been trying to fight off the flu since then. Unfortunately (or actually fortunately), I had a really busy day on Friday, so my body really felt run down by time I ended up going home (around 8:00 pm). About 6 weeks ago, I committed to sponsoring a breakfast for the Blue Sharks running group on a Saturday morning, which happened to be yesterday. The other thing that I had to do yesterday was finish my 20 mile long run (the last 20 miler of my training cycle). The reason why I wanted to do the 20 miler yesterday instead of today was because last night was a date night for my wife and I, and I didn't want to have that 20 miler hovering over my head. I wanted to know that it was over, and that we could go out and do whatever we wanted, as late as we wanted, and just have a blast.... but as I said earlier, I felt terrible at the end of my work day, and actually told Chris and Julie (who were running in Downtown also, that I would probably have to skip out on my 20 miler).

I was able to get to my bed by 10:30, but I was very stuffy. I woke up at around 12:30, and went to the bathroom, and when I went back in the bed, I was so uncomfortable and congested, that I could not sleep. I knew I had to get up at 4:30, in order to drive down to the Downtown YMCA and host the breakfast, but I was so frustrated because I was not able to go back to bed. I tried to relax my mind as much as I could to no avail. Finally, I think I fell back asleep, but woke up again before 2:00 am, and was even more uncomfortable at this point. So, I started to think..... should I just do my 20 miler now??? I know, it sounds crazy, but at least I could get it out of the way... I just didn't know if my body would hold up. I realized that this would take me around 3 hours, and it wouldn't give me enough time to complete it by my house, shower up, and get down there in enough time. So..... I decided to get dressed, drive down to our office in South Tampa, and I started to run on Bayshore.... at 3:15 am!!!! Right before I started, I called Chris to let him know what I was doing (he just laughed at me) because I knew that he was going to be down there around 4ish to start his run also. I figured that we could meet up at some point and run together.
As I was driving in Hyde Park, it must have been around 2:45 or so, and I saw many people by their cars, at bars...even saw a few people puking on the side of the road (from too much alcohol I assume)... and thought to crazy as I may be, I would rather be doing what I am doing, than what those folks are doing right now.
Initially I was nervous about running that early...because there was obviously no people running or walking on Bayshore, except for homeless folks sleeping on the benches. I tried to keep my breathing quiet so I wouldn't wake any of them up, but once I got going and turned on my Ipod, it was like any other run. I basically ran all the way on Bayshore to Interbay and 1st St. and then back to the YMCA. About 8 miles into the run, I met up with Chris and Julie and ran another 7 miles with them. We met up with the Blue Sharks and Fred (the director) introduced myself and Chris to everyone and mentioned that the Renewal Rehab facility was sponsoring the breakfast (we appreciated the plug!). I then proceeded to run an additional 6 miles to finish up with a little over 20 miles, which was done by 6:15 am. After I finished, Chris, Julie and myself went to pick up the breakfast, set up our tables, and meet with all the runners as they finished their runs. I ended up staying until close to 10:00 am and met a lot of people, including a good amount of people that are also running the Chicago Marathon.

When I got home, I had my 3 favorite people waiting for me, and sang Happy Birthday to me, and greeted me with loving arms (luckily I took a shower at the Y, so they were safe). All these things happened today, and it wasn't even 11 am yet....

I did relax for a few hours and then Kerry and I went out for my B-day and had a blast. From Bennigans to Splittsville to Grille 54 for dessert (which is an awesome restaurant!!!!).... we had such a good time... anytime I can be with my sweetheart are good times.... felt like college again... but always so nice to have a great time, and then come back to our kids and kiss them goodnight.

This was my best birthday in a long time! Actually my best birthday ever, because every year I feel blessed that God has given me another year to enjoy my kids, my wife, and the people that he has put in my life.

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