I've mentioned before that Adam grew up in Pittsburgh, so the usual tradition is to spend Thanksgiving with Adam's family here. I've visited Pittsburgh many times, yet everytime I do I'm still stunned by the city's surprising beauty and diversity. When entering the city, the view you get while emerging from the Fort Pitt tunnel is unlike any I've ever seen.
Backing up a bit. This past weekend, Adam and I made the 8-hour drive from Chicago to Pittsburgh with an overnight stop in Cleveland enroute. For all you Food Network fans, we had dinner at Iron Chef Michael Symon's restaurant, Lolita, on Saturday night. I am by no means a foodie, but Lolita was very enjoyable.
|Iron Chef Michael Symon|
(In case you were wondering, he did NOT greet us at the front door in this pose.)
After arriving in Pittsburgh yesterday afternoon, we had tickets to the Steelers-Ravens game at Heinz Field last night. The game is worthy of a whole post by itself, which is off-topic for me here (I'll leave that to Adam to cover in detail). However, in short it was a great game against a bitter rival. And after screaming my innerds out for most of the night, I am paying for it today with a voice so hoarse that I could put Louis Armstrong to shame.
(Maybe the reason Louis's voice sounds so distinctive is because he's also a big sportsfan and has also gone overboard with vocalizing his sportsfan enthusiasm?)
Here are some pictures from the game last night:
|Festiveness in front of Heinz Field|
|Fans waiting to go through the security lines|
|The view from our original seats|
|Fans in action, waving their Terrible Towels. |
It was an absolutely incredible sight to see 63,000+ fans doing this in unison.
This picture so does NOT do it justice.
|We got asked to trade seats from Section 519 to Section 219 by a woman who wanted to sit with some of her friends. Who were we to argue?|
This was the view from our new seats.
Beyond celebrating Thanksgiving in Pittsburgh, I'll also be running my first-ever Turkey Trot here - the PNC YMCA Turkey Trot 5-miler on Thanksgiving Day.
I am excited to run my first race outside of Illinois. Come to think of it, I've actually never even run a race outside of Chicago city limits. So as much as I love the Chicago lakefront and neighborhoods, I am looking forward to some new scenery.
Unfortunately I am NOWHERE near peak condition for this race. I haven't even logged 25 miles TOTAL since running the Chicago Marathon on October 7. I don't even want to think about how much my endurance and fitness levels have probably plummeted in these last few weeks. When I do run, I am still battling groin pain, hip flexor tightness, and knee discomfort. I'm even starting to experience some wonkiness in my left foot. Then, to add even more insult to injury (both literally and figuratively), I've put on a couple of pounds, too. Not a great feeling going into the holiday season, that's for sure. (I'll probably be one of those folks who causes irritation to all regular-gym-goers by taking up all kinds of workout space starting on January 1.)
I would love to put forth aggressive goals for myself going into this race, but now is really not the time for me to be trying to set a PR. So as hard as it will be mentally, I'm going to try not to focus on goals and just have a good time. Several of Adam's lifelong friends (Hi, Molly, Julie, and Shawn!) are also running the Turkey Trot, so it'll be fun to enjoy the festivities with them. Heck, this might even be the first-ever race where I try to take action pictures from inside the race course. (Yes, me taking MORE pictures. Hard to believe, I know!)
Happy Thanksgiving week to all! And happy racing to all that are doing Turkey Trots or other races this week!