It’s now Thursday September 29, 4:40am and I’m in my room on the 20th floor at the Crowne Plaza in St. Paul, Minnesota. The Twin Cities Marathon is about 74 hours away and I’m really looking forward to just pushing my shorter faster limits as hard as I can manage.
But I’m also loving the unusualness of America. There’s a really rich blend of accents all around, everything is big, and there’s a sign in the nearby supermarket saying Tuesdays are 50% off for war widows and veterans.
Had a great flight to LA. Delta seems a really good airline to fly with but I just couldn’t get into any useful position for sleeping. Thought that if I went one way my knee or foot would probably stray into the aisle and get smashed by a cart, the other just meant i was making sweet facial love to my own armpit and leaning back just wasn’t anything worthwhile.
Still, breakfast burrito and a triple tabasco Virgin Mary for breakfast in LA kickstarted the day. Today. Yesterday. Made up for dumping 2 coffees from two different supposedly great coffee places within 10 minutes of each other. LAX, your coffee just ain’t coffee.
Main in-air topics for discussion were chimpanzee attacks, whole lot of nothing to do with monkeys, running, America’s Cup, Obama, the Tea Party (the bigots, not the band), weight loss, diabetes (all kinds) and how many SkyMiles it takes to get a free trip to the nearest corner.
Was a bit of a rockstar moment at Minnesota Airport. Geoff, my chauffeur (yeah, I know!!) met me holding my name on a sign as I walked out to get to the baggage claim. Then we jumped in the front of his black stretch Lincoln and had a quick drive into St. Paul – Minnesota’s ‘Twin City’. Or we would have, but I stopped at Best Buy to grab this new iPad, with a sweet little keyboard dock so it’s sitting up like a touchscreen monitor while I type away furiously and without my fat fingers straying and launching typos.
One of the other first things I did was to download the Chemical Brothers soundtrack for Hanna, movie I watched on the plane. Genuinely awesome movie with Eric Bana and young actress from Let The Right One In (i think) from the flight to LA – great music for running to as well. Sort of like a Feral Red Riding Hood beating the snot out of Jason Bourne.
Yes, that good..
Going to put it out there now – aiming for 3:10 on Sunday. Came here aiming for 3:15 but think it’s probably worth really embracing the moment and getting ready to really really hurt.
The support from Monique and HypoActive has just been deeply touching, Medtronic has really laid it on so far and am pretty sure they’ll continue to do so. Such an amazing thing to be pulled into – really recommend any runner living with an implanted device or electronic device on which their wellbeing depends look into the Medtronic Global Heroes Program and look at signing up next year. I’m acutely aware that I’m very lucky to be here and there’s no reason you shouldn’t be so lucky if those caveats apply to you.
And also – Sakura! Holy Shpadoingle! Definitely in the running for the best sushi I’ve ever had and at this point there’s a good chance I won’t be eating anywhere else while I’m here. Had salmon skin salad, green mussels in salmon roe, wildly tasty inside out California Rolls with a sweet sauce and a delicious mushroom soup, and every bite of the whole meal totally popped.
Yes, it’s quite a bit to say about food and one restaurant, but needing to get my body feeling good and dose up on nourishment before Sunday, they have just been a massive highlight so far, with their fresh deliciousness feeling like it sped up recovery by about 18 hours.
And just now because timezone dysplasia and adrenalin kicked it up a notch to wake me at 1:30am, have just gone for a shake-out run along the gorgeous river running through the city, crisscrossed by massive stone bridges and with the occasional ultra lit steamboat sitting by the quayside. Snooped out Run and Fun, local running store, and will hit there tomorrow. Could only see Gu and Clif through the window, so hopefully they have at least SiS or Hammer gels.
Didn’t pack any eLoad or other gels because I expected gel packets to cause a problem going through customs in the US – same reason it was 30 hours between toothpastes.
And I think I need to work out the tipping thing. Too easy to overdo it here because their culture essentially demands it, everyone is super-helpful anyway, and the notes look and feel like Monopoly money.
O yeah – to explain the picture, I finally got to try Muscle Milk and it was DELICIOUSLY AWESOME, and had my first Twinkie too. I can imagine how living near a shelf load of those would make you faaat. Too tasty. With the flight to LA being all about Chimpanzee attacks, getting home (?) to the hotel and finding Planet of the Apes going was pretty funny.
To me, at least. Always the way! : )