Thursday, June 21, 2007

Crazy busy, company outing and Corporate Challenge, and off to ALA

It's been another crazy busy week (Connie and I cranked out four acquisition proposals in a day and a half, including one last-minute auction project), but capped off with our very first company outing in Central Park, complete with hula-hooping, three-legged races, egg carry, bake-off, basketball, volleyball, softball and kickball, and more. I was roped into helping organize a softball game, and as I mentioned here, I also suggested kickball. The main game was softball, though, and I'm glad it was. I played on our company softball team back when we were based in Boston, and even though I've never been very good, it just brought back good memories. I played catcher, the position I used to always play back in the day. It's just a plain ton of fun. And I was captain of the winning team, woo-hoo! We won 4-0 after 7 innings. During the game I kept feeling like I was pulling something (what's the muscle on the back of the thigh?), and also got hit by the softball on my right knee while running to third (actually, I was already standing on third when the ball hit me), but I'm not really complaining, it was a great time. What I always loved about our softball team in Boston is that it united people from different departments. I have very little contact with coworkers outside of the young readers division, so it was good to meet some new people and get to know some familiar faces better.

The kickball game was a little scrappier and shorter, just three innings, and I think we lost 4-2 or 3-2. But it's just so fun seeing grown adults playing kickball. It's fantastic.

And THEN, later tonight, I ran in the Chase Corporate Challenge. My team introduced ourselves to each other by saying our name, department, and our running experience. It was weird realizing that I was actually one of the more experienced runners there. I'm used to being the amateur runner, the one just starting out, the one who never quite considered herself a runner, but now, 15 years later, multiple races, half marathons, and a marathon under my belt, including 3 or 4 Corporate Challenges, I guess I'm an old pro. There were so many people running their first organized race, and I must make a special shout-out to Jill, who only started jogging a month ago. She finished, and ran the whole way. Congratulations, Jill! You'll be running marathons before you know it. I remember my first Corporate Challenge in Boston my first or second year working at my company--it was my first official race, too.

Just as the race started, I heard someone call my name, and who would it be but Cheryl! Scholastic had the coolest T-shirts. Ours was plan navy blue with our logo on the back. And I didn't even wear mine because there were only larges left. I'm determined to make sure our company has a cool T-shirt next year.

I've been running regularly, but haven't been working on my speed. I made my goal to finish with an average of just under 10-minute miles, but after a quick start, weaving through the crowds, I ran an 8-minute first mile. I decided to try to keep up the pace. It was hard, I tell ya. But after raining for about a half hour before the race, the sky opened up, rainbow and flowing clouds and blue sky, and it was absolutely gorgeous, a little muggy, but overall perfect running weather. I crossed the finish line at 31:22, which if you subtract the 2 minutes it took to get to the starting line, means a net time of 29:22. Which means I ran about 8 and a half minute miles!!! (right? I'm horrible at math, as I mentioned in #6) I've never, ever, run a race that fast. Maybe being sore from softball and kickball actually helped, because it felt good to stretch out my muscles by running.

Phew. Then got caught in the rain on the way home. I'm absolutely exhausted.

Now I have to pack for ALA. My basic schedule is here, so if you're going, please stop by the booth and say hi!

I hope I'm not too sore tomorrow...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

T.S. sent me the link to your page. Thanks so much for the shout out! When I think about running marathons, 3.5 miles seems like nothing, but I really didn't think I'd ever be able to do this, and it was great to get the support from the group and come back to everyone cheering. I'm really inspired by your marathon post, and also by your father running a full marathon! I know it'll take me forever and that I'll have to work my way up slowly, but hopefully that'll be me one day.

Thanks again for the inspiration!