Thursday, July 21, 2011

Heat Index 134

All the news about the big heat wave makes me laugh.  I've survived many summers living in Arizona and Southwest Florida.  I know what hot is, at least I thought I did until today.

The Czarina got home as usual just before 6 p.m. and I noticed that some clouds had rolled in making a longer than unusual run appear inviting.  We headed out the door about 6:15 and I was ready to go 6 miles.  The Czarina wasn't so sure.

A massive cloud hid the sun for the first mile or so and I noticed at about a mile and a half it had rained in that section.  The trail immediately went into sauna mode as the sun started peaking out, steaming the left over moisture off of the asphalt.  The wet part of the trail gave way to dry pavement at 2.5 miles and I thought it's not so bad.  I turned around at 3 miles still feeling full of run and noticed the Czarina was nowhere in sight.

I was clipping along pretty good until just before 4 miles and the breeze out of the south felt more like a blast furnace.  Usually any breeze on a run around here in the summer brings welcome relief but not this time.  Shortly after 4 miles I began thinking how nice it would be to walk home, but then I realized the Czarina didn't have a house key and if she was facing a bathroom emergency upon her arrival home all hell would break loose.

I soldiered on wondering if it was possible that my brains could be melting inside my head.  I checked my split at 5 miles and saw that I had actually managed to run a 9:15 mile.  As I looked ahead I spied a solitary figure in the distance walking.  I realized that the Czarina had succumbed to the heat and was walking it in.  She was a half mile in front of me but I figured I would catch her before I reached home.

Now I was motivated to keep moving forward and I kept putting one foot in front of another.  Two blocks from home I caught the Czarina who was strolling down the sidewalk.  Once I hit the 6 mile mark I turned around and walked home with her.  She told me the heat forced her to stop her run at 3 miles.  I couldn't blame her.  It was brutal.

I hit the front door and headed for the computer, curious to see what the temperature was at 7:15 p.m.  It was 95.9 degrees, in small print just below it read Heat Index 134.  I couldn't believe my eyes.  But then I looked at the dew point, which stood at an unbelievable 87 degrees.  No wonder I wanted to walk home after 4 miles.