Tonight was yet another practice at the Wells Fargo building downtown. It’s coming down to the wire, since the race is next week, so lots more people are showing up now. That made for a very long line this evening.
I went downtown with Morgan and Chris. We got there earlier today, but then again, so did everyone else. So we ended up waiting in line for close to half and hour before we got into the stairs. When they let our group in, the people around us all said I should go first, since they figured I’d end up passing all of them. So I had a clear stairway up to about 30 or so before I started catching up with the group that started before us. The YMCA has been good about encouraging people who are not going for time to stay to the outside, and to let faster people pass on the inside. But apparently, some people just haven’t gotten the memo. There was a guy I caught up to who flat-out refused to get out of my way. I came up behind him, and I somehow managed to speak and ask him to move over. He didn’t. I said it again. And then I reached forward and pushed him gently to the side, thinking that maybe he was listening to loud music and hadn’t heard me. But he still refused to move over. So I had to run past him and immediately cut in front of him to make the turn on the next landing. Chris was following me, and he said that the guy looked really unhappy about that. But really, what good does it do him to hold us up? It doesn’t make him go faster, and it doesn’t cost him anything to step to the side on the stairs and let us go by.
The same thing happened around 40. This time it was a woman who refused to get out of the way. I had to run the long way around the landing to get by her. So those things cost me probably close to 10 seconds.
Around 45, Johnny passed me. He was the only person who passed me, and I feel no shame about that. He came up behind me, and I stepped sideways on one flight to let him by. It’s a simple courtesy, and as long as I don’t end up taking the long way around the outside of a landing, it doesn’t cost me any time.
At the top, I flopped down on the landing and looked at my watch. It said 8:58. Still better than last year, but 8 seconds slower than on Monday. I’d tried a new method for setting split times tonight. I had a small note pinned to my glove just giving the floor numbers where I thought I should be at the 2, 4, 6, and 8 minute marks. I’d been on schedule up to the 4 minute mark at 28, but then I fell behind. I’m sure that the L.A. traffic I encountered in the stairwell didn’t help.
After a short rest, Morgan and I headed up a second time. We both took it easy. I made it up in 10:31, which was not bad for loafing along, and I still passed bunches of people.
It was an ‘OK’ outing. Not great, but still valuable experience.