Over 30 counties in North Carolina are experiencing drought conditions and there are terrible wildfires burning in the mountains with over 44,000 acres burned so far.
We woke up this morning to a very hazy skyline here in Charlotte and the smell of smoke hanging in the air. As of today, we are under a Code Red air quality warning due to “high level particulate matter.”
I went running yesterday before the advisory had been issued and have been paying the price for it ever since. The air was definitely a bit hazy when I went out but the smoke smell wasn’t very noticeable so I thought it was okay. I ran eight miles at around an 8:45 pace and had a headache immediately after the run that is still with me today. I’m having a ton of sinus pressure and drainage.
Clearly, my first prayer is for the fires to be contained for the safety of our mountain neighbors and for our environment. Secondly, (a far, far, far distant second) is my fear that I’m going to have to do my longest long run (I’m hitting 20 this weekend) on the treadmill on Saturday…which sounds completely insane. Maybe it wouldn’t be the worst thing since Kiawah is flat and I can make the treadmill a flat road. Might make for realistic running conditions?
The saddest thing about these fires is that I read all but one of them were started by humans, both unintentionally and through arson, and not by environmental causes. To know that widespread destruction like this could have easily been avoided is so maddening.
Staying on the topic of running, I went to Run For Your Life today to pick up my finisher medals from the Charlotte Half Marathon. I forgot to get them on Saturday because I kept running after the finish and I had to go to a separate location to get my double finisher medal. I got the normal half marathon medal and also a 26.2 “double medal” because I ran the Rocktoberfest Half Marathon and the Charlotte Half Marathon. Pretty cool perk!
When I was cleaning out my closet on Sunday I came across a bunch of old race medals. I always wonder whether or not I should hold onto them but I can’t bring myself to get rid of them, especially the ones that required a lot of training, hard work and believing in myself and my goals. They stay tucked away in a drawer but I love the memories they hold and their reminder of how far I’ve come as a runner.
Side note: has anyone noticed how race medals are getting bigger, better and bling-ier? (totally not a word there) Look at the difference between my dinky Myrtle Beach Half Marathon medal with a red, white and blue ribbon and my Charlotte Half Marathon giant spinning medal.
I have quite a few running related post ideas brewing away in my head right now including everything from my must have gear to what does it mean to be a “runner” and overcoming self-doubt when it comes to running to running with dogs and much more. If you have any running related topics you’d like for me to cover, please let me know.
I also wanted to invite you guys to join my closed Facebook community. My half marathon training team has decided to keep our Facebook group going post-race. One thing I’ve loved so much about this training group is how positive everyone it has been. It’s extremely refreshing to see a big group of women come together in such a supportive and collaborative way. I’m going to transition the group into a closed community for any reader who is interested to join so that you can connect with other like-minded women, share knowledge and find inspiration. I’ll also be around a ton answering questions and participating in the conversation.
Thank you so much for being so awesome. I feel very grateful for each and every one of you whether we have connected in person/via email/through comments/on social/etc. or you’re just reading from afar.
Have you every dealt with bad air quality and running?
What’s the longest you’ve run on the treadmill? Has anyone done a really long run on the treadmill?
What do you do with your old race medals?