Thanksgiving: 12 Miles and 2 Nipples

Ready for my Thanksgiving Day Run

Since Cara is in Vermont, I had decided to drive down to Charleston and spend Thanksgiving with my brother. It was going to be a triple-threat: beer, movies and pizza. And just for a bit of nostalgia, I was going to do the Turkey Day Run again. But at the last minute, I did a little financial math and decided against it. I just took my car in for some repairs, and I’m losing two days of work because of the holiday… it just didn’t seem like a good time to use up all that gas and pay a race fee.

So instead, I decided to run on my own for free. It’s not as nice as a 5K in Charleston, and I’m even a little bummed that I didn’t go for the one here in Columbia. But really, when am I going to find another opportunity to safely run down Broad River Road? The traffic was actually kind of sane today, and a little awareness was all I needed to be safe.

Even the weather was cooperating. There was a bit of a chill in the wind, but after the first mile I was completely comfortable. I went all the way to the bridge over the Broad River and took a left into the little dirt road that leads to Riverfront Park. There’s a place to park cars and the gate doesn’t close until 9pm, so I made a note to come back soon after work. The canal ends at a little bridge before joining with the river, and when you cross it you get this view:

Gears at the Dam
The light was just perfect for this one. πŸ™‚

At first I had been thinking of a 10K run. Then I thought maybe I would do 8 miles. Once I was outside I figured I would just go 5 miles out and turn around for a 10-mile. But when I was at the dam, looking around at the beautiful water and the other people who were showing up to enjoy the park… well, I just had to run into the park for a mile or so before turning around. I wound up with a 12-mile Thanksgiving Day run!

There was just one problem. At around 10 miles, my wet, sweaty shirt had finally washed away my BodyGlide. This is mainly a problem in warmer months and for longer distances. As long as I have a dry shirt or don’t run too long with a wet one, I’m fine. But this was 12 miles in nice weather. Eventually both nipples were bleeding, and I had to wash the shirt by hand to keep it from staining. I think it might be time to start using those small round Band-Aids for these longer distances. Hopefully they’ll prevent the problem in the future.

Popped Them Both afte the 10th Mile
It isn’t as bad as it looks. Stings a bit in the shower, but they’re just a little sore after that. No worries.

In the end, I think I did pretty well. 12 miles this morning, and a guilt-free Thanksgiving this afternoon. I’d rather be with my brother eating pizza and watching World War II documentaries, but he understood why I stayed here. Besides, my sister and the parents are happy to have me around. Speaking of which, I’d better post this and get over there. I’m really hungry. Not cranky-hungry, but getting there. I’d better drive over so I can stuff my face.

We have 5 comments.

  • Regina | November 29, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    This might be a little squicky for you, but you can buy reusable gel pads that ladies use when they’re breastfeeding that will probably help you avoid this. They have a gel on one side that sticks to your skin, and the other side just has some smooth fabric so the gel doesn’t stick to your clothes.

  • Brian | November 29, 2011 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

    Really? That would be ideal! I was just going to use small Band-Aids, but I hated the idea of tossing bunches of them into the trash. Can I just get them anywhere, or do I need to do a manly strut through a maternity store?

  • Regina | November 30, 2011 at 10:51 am | Permalink

    I don’t remember, but you ought to be able to buy them in a drug store or a babies r us, I would think. Or, just order off of Amazon. I used these

    Thinking about it, youi’ll be sweating. I don’t know if that will affect the “stickability” of them. Might, or not. Have to experiment a bit, I guess.

    Got to be a better way than bandaids.

  • Regina | November 30, 2011 at 11:01 am | Permalink

    Okay, I also found this, and it might work better, since it’s for the exact problem:

    Evidently, this is a male runner thing and is pretty common. And sounds terribly painful.

    It occurred to me that the reason it does not happen to women is because they wear bras and the fabric in a bra does not move around, an therefore chafe. What you wore a very tight tank top made of smooth fabric under your shirt? You could cut the back and midriff out (so yeah it would sort of be a “sports bra” type thing to wear under your shirt?

    Sounds silly, but listen. I have been there. I was in agony for months breastfeeding my kid. Being pregnant was a cakewalk compared to walking around with chafed nipples all the time. Seriously, man, I am feeling for you.

  • Brian | November 30, 2011 at 11:39 am | Permalink

    Well, I should mention that nipples aren’t as sensitive for men as they are for the ladies. If men see me bleeding, they’re surprised and a little concerned. Women double over in sympathy pain. I also don’t have this problem until the shirt gets wet and basically sticks to me. The fabric of the shirt is a big deal, and that white one has been designated a “winter and short run only” shirt. I’m switching back to the really light stuff that wicks away moisture a little better.

    Columbia is definitely more humid than Charleston was, because the problem wasn’t this bad until I came back here as a runner. (I guess it’s the ocean breeze.) I have some Band-Aids that I’ll use this week, but those nip guards look like a more permanent solution. Thanks! Good to know you’re looking out for me. πŸ™‚

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