I was tagged by a fellow runner and writer to list my Top Runs of 2007.
I can’t resist a challenge but have modified the task slightly, so instead of my top runs of the year, I’ll tell you about the Top Memorable Runs of 2007.
(running on the beaches of Normandie)
5. Hill Runs to the Bakery
Location: Cergy, France.
The story: I lived in a small village outside of Paris for most of last year. The best thing about the village was its bakery. Imagine French baguettes at their best. Imagine reserving a cake for Christmas 2-weeks in advance and lining up outside the door to pick it up. This bakery was locally quite famous and also located at the top of The Perfect Hill… Once a week, I’d warm up and then complete 7-9 hills. I’d start at the bottom, huff and puff my way up to the top and touch the wall of the bakery and then coast back down to the start. I received so many thumbs-ups, quizzical glances and outright laughter that I became known as that American Girl Who Runs. The bakery owner was particularly entertained.
4. The Ugly Shorts Run
Location: Downtown Paris
The Story: I have a pair of purple running shorts. They are certainly not cute by American standards. Even I knew that, but I had no idea just how hideous they were until I wore them on a 18-mile run that took me from the outskirts of Paris into the heart of the VIIIéme and back. People laughed. A little girl pointed. My boyfriend suggested I skip my workout for the day when he saw what I was wearing. The short story that I eventually wrote about the hideous shorts was featured on an American radio show, so I can’t complain too much -except about the French.
3. The Miner’s 10K Fun Run
The Story: Everything just clicked. My legs were fresh. My training had been intense before the run. The conditions were ideal. The absolute highlight was hearing my mom cheer for me with all her might as I rounded the last 200 meters. The gigantic post-race breakfast wasn’t bad either. (Nothing better than eggs and chicken apple sausage after a good race, right?)
2. Paris Marathon 2007
Location: 26.2 miles of pure craziness in downtown Paris.
The Story: It was my first marathon. I made many mistakes – I went out too quickly, I didn’t drink enough. I didn’t eat enough. At mile 15 I was convinced I would never endure this misery again. But I had wonderful friends who came to support me (Yves, Emily et Seb!! David aussi qui m’a trouvé par hasard à la fin!) Even my parents came out. But, really, who would be stupid enough to run a marathon more than once? An hour after the race I started thinking about what I could have done better and I was hooked.
1. Qualifying for Boston
Location: CIM, 26.2 miles of pure craziness in the suburbs of Sacramento
The Story: My whole entire family came out to support me. Nothing can compare with the feeling that comes with crossing the finish line and realizing you’ve surpassed your goal…and you’re going to Boston!