Sunday, January 25, 2009

the freezing point of gatorade.... lower than the freezing point of water.  How do I know this?  Well, this morning I ran the Manhattan Half Marathon in Central Park.  It was a little more than two full loops of the park and according to the New York Road Runner's results page, the temperature was 14 degrees.  14 degrees!   

The NYRR races always have water stations (or "fluid stations" as they call them) spread throughout the course.  Today there were 4 stations on this course that  you hit 2 times each. Some had just water, some had Gatorade and water.  At the first water station I grabbed a cup and there was a lovely film of ice on top of the water.  I didn't see it fast enough and as I squeezed the cup to take a sip, the ice flew out and all over me.  Fun!  At the next station I just took Gatorade - no ice yet but it was mighty cold.  I was definitely running slow today so I was really far back in the pack - the leaders passed me with 2.1 miles left in their course - I was at mile 5. Yes, you read that right, they were almost done and I had 8.1 miles left to go!  By the time I hit the next station with Gatorade the contents of the cup resembled a Slurpee.  Nothing solid, just a nice, slushy freeze of yellow Gatorade.

I was so far back in the pack that the second to last table had actually run out of water by the time I got there.  And the last station?  Well, the first table had a lovely grid of cups with frozen water that were actually frozen to the table.  They wouldn't budge.  As I passed the last table, a very kind man pried up a frozen cup, violently banged it on the corner of the table to break the ice in the cup and passed it to a grateful me.  I got about two sips out of it and then chewed ice chips for the next 5 minutes.  

It definitely wasn't my fastest race, but considering I hadn't run further than 6 miles at a time since the Marine Corps Marathon in October,  I was happy to just finish.  I am, however, pretty sure it was my coldest race.  Brrr!

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