Another day in the city brings less tired feet and legs each time the Asics hit the pavement, ironically. As the days tick by more quickly towards the Breast Cancer 3-day event in August, I am constantly trying to make time to train according to the ‘Training Plan’. Seeing the ‘Saturday – 17 miles easy walking’ and ‘Sunday – 13 miles easy walking’ kinda freaked me out a bit, but decided to give it a shot. My goal for the weekend was to just shop less, walk more. Ironically, I was able to do both….shop and put in some serious miles.
Saturday thanks to the newly added express train from Waukegan, I was able to get an early start and arrived in Chicago at 9:45. It was nice for the first half hour or so, but then it was time for the umbrella for about the next hour. I made south trek til about 10th street, then turning around after the rain got heavier. I didn’t want to get caught in the parks if the storms got worse.
Soon, the sky closed up and the sun was glorious. I meandered my way north all the way to North Beach stopping only a couple of times to relax a bit for 10 minute breaks, then my longest stop, for a beer at Castaways. All in all, I was able to find some cute deals when I needed to slow up on my 4mph pace, and walk for 3 hours straight in the afternoon back to the train. In all, I visited North Beach, Millennium & Grant parks including the museum campus to Adler. My tally for Saturday was in the 17-19 mile range (without shopping time). Mission accomplished.
Upon walking, I always people watch as I go, noticing outfits as I pass by. I began taking special notice to ‘the old biddies’. I saw old women in beautiful Chanel suits with their Coach purses, ugly mismatched jean skirts and ruffle shirts, a cute little pair of capris with orange argyle socks and light blue Mr. Rogers shoes, a fancy ‘burberry’ Gramma complete with scarf, bag and matching shoes, Grammas with granddaughters carrying their ‘American Girl’ namesake. Pretty creamy-skinned grammas with immaculate hair in their velvet track suits, and of course the other end of the spectrum of wrinkly old crotchety smelly ladies with BO that could knock down a house even in the 2 seconds it takes to pass them on the street.
To make it fair, I began checking out the men too…you have the fantastic cologne ones that you just get a whiff of them enough to want to turn and run after them in the street tackling them to the ground (that happened several times, less the running and tackling), the ‘porn king’ Grecian God-wanna-be’s whose cologne made you gag and his gelled hair swished and greased his shoulders of his white button up and cheesy too-tight trousers and 27 gold necklaces as he sauntered. But then you have the skaters with crazy tats sans shirts cruising through the people, the college dudes with their ipods and messenger bags and Chuck Taylors stealthing through the crowds, and finally the boyfriends glued to their women as if any second, she would leave him for a passing Grecian God. I’m partial to the business men in their nice trousers, leather shoes, crisp button ups with the nice smiles that actually look you in the eye when you pass as if saying ‘welcome to my city, stay awhile?’ Well, I think I will do just that is what I’d tell them…. Anyone who smiles at you are keepers!
Sunday, the express train wasn’t an option so tied with the fact that I would be leaving early as well, my time was cut by 2 hours. I took it a little easier today and clocked about 14 miles of good steady pavement hitting. This day, though I followed the Lake Shore Drive path all the way along the marina front and down the Chicago Riverfront back to Michigan. The second I entered the darkened path headed back west, the little leaf Lindens were so fragrant, I never wanted to leave this sweet heavenly path. I actually needed the umbrella when I got to that path and the rain coming down made the smell that much sweeter. Luckily the showers didn’t last more than 10 minutes or so a few times that day. Kept it cool.
By the end of the 2 days, I had walked approximately 34 miles depending on the mph I was using. I averaged my numbers to the low end of my pace to not get my hopes up for having walked over the recommended amount.
The next weekend I’m able to go and walk won’t be for a few weeks, so I’ll be sure to make them good ones……relaxing ones!