I drove over to City Hall and parked. Since I didn't have the warm up walk I normally do, I walked to the Johnny Kelley statue and then back down the block to the the corner of Lowell Ave. to start my run. About a two minutes into the run I was thinking, "What the hell am I doing? This is hill is fucking steep..." I began thinking about all the people who hit this hill after running 19 miles knowing they still have 7.2 more to go and thought maybe I was picking up a bit of that energy.
Plugging on I had other thoughts:
- Why did I forget my sunglasses?
- I hope no one I know drives past now
- Is this weather ever going to break?
- I can't believe they make the track kids run this hill all the time
- Maybe this isn't so bad - I mean I'm already half way up
When I passed the statue on the way down, I called out, "24.2 more to go Johnny."
He just smiled that enigmatic grin through the decades. There were no memorials or tributes to him today - DPW must have cleaned up around there recently since the trees are trimmed back
and the grass is mowed. I know they'll start popping up again - the blown sneakers, empty gatorade bottles and such always seem to find their way there. Oftentimes with messages of thanks and running stories.
But I'm still glowing from this run. I did it, I ran Heartbreak Hill in 27:57 - a great time for me. In the background, as I crossed the crosswalk marking the 2 mile mark, I could hear Tek clapping while he leaned on his crutches next to Johnny who yelled "you go girl."
It was a good run.