Ciao Cinquecento Amici,
I am quickly adjusting to my jetlag from a little over two weeks spent in the U.S. visiting family, friends, and attending one of the most romantic weddings of the decade. I started near my official Wisconsin hometown with my immediate family, as well as a few snuggle-bug family members. Then, I flitted over to my adopted hometown, Madison, Wisconsin, for a whirlwind 40-hour tour of favorite friends, restaurants, and running locales. I zoomed over to Dave’s Wisconsin home-region to visit with his clan and their kin – five nieces and one nephew between the ages of seven years and seven months. It was all topped off with a delightful first-time visit to Lawrence, Kansas, where I swooned at the aforementioned wedding.
Some people dislike the word ‘aforementioned’ because it is long and a bit over the top. I love it though; much like I love a run, even on days out of my comfort zone, with high heat and relatively high humidity. That is why despite the 82 degree weather at 8am, and the 66% humidity in Kansas on Saturday morning, I headed out to River Front Park for a 9-mile run.
I was running across continents with Sara from Real Fun Food. Sara took on the beastiest beast of basic running events, the marathon. After I berated her in the comments for her crazy choice, I offered myself up as a slightly-less-crazy long-distance running buddy. I plan to participate in her training runs until they hit about 15 miles, making me slightly-less-crazy than Sara, who will eventually run 26.2 miles (the distance of all modern marathon races). 15 miles is about the point where the running/time cost-benefit ratio runs out for me.
On Saturday, Sara ran through central London, you can read all about it here. She is quite funny, tells a good story, and usually writes about food in connection with the rest of her charming life. Sara has encouraged me to photo-document my running route; so, to commemorate our first cross-continental run, I did just that.
Enjoy the trek from University of Kansas through downtown Lawrence to the Riverfront Park and back. It is a lovely trip.
University of Kansas mascot, the Jayhawk, was everywhere in Lawrence. We stayed at a vrbo one block from the football stadium and campus. This statue was a few blocks off campus toward downtown. While in Lawrence I saw oodles of cardinals and a few robins, but never did spy a jayhawk, except like this.
After about 2.5 miles, I arrived at the trailhead of Riverfront Park, a trail network spanning about 1000 acres along the Kansas River.
The run was tough, slow, and sweaty. For the previous two weeks, I had been regularly drinking alcohol with breakfast (Bloody Mary?), lunch (beer?), or dinner (cocktails or wine) – some days it was all three! I was celebrating life with my family. Plus, many days I did not get inebriated; it was just that I was consistently having more alcohol and daily calories than my body is accustomed to managing. By the time I got to Lawrence, my body was confused and was seriously considering treating hops as a new form of bread. Considering those drawbacks, together with the heat and humidity, I was happy to finish the run with all my bodily organs still functioning!