Sunday, October 18, 2009

10K, A-Okay.

I ran my last race of the year today.

I finished the Miracle Beach 10k with a blazing fast 44:28 - 5 minutes off my time from last year. I still placed fourth in my age group, which just means the other old bastards (M35-39) have gotten faster too.

It was a great race, and I felt fantastic throughout. I probably could have even pushed a bit harder, but with doing Victoria last Sunday, I didn't think it wise to punish my legs further.

As always, the weather turned out great for the run - I always seem to luck out that way. (Knock on wood if you can.) It was sunny, cool, and the perfect weather to kick ass in.

For most of the race, I was running with a couple of guys, not paying attention to my pace, just running what felt right. It wasn't until one of them commented that we were clocking a 4'30" k that I started to check my pace, and even slowed down a bit - got to have gas in the tank to be able to finish. (Running's like sex - if you start out too fast, you just fall apart at the finish - never a good thing.)

Still, I was well ahead of where I wanted to be - at best I hoped for a time somewhere around the 45 minute mark, so to beat that even by just 30 seconds is a great thing. And as always, having them call out your name at the awards is great, even if it is just 4th place.

I say it's my last race of the year just because of the fact that I know of nothing else that's coming up. I'm contemplating the Vancouver Marathon, but that's not until May - and even then, I can incorporate the Comox Half and the Merville 15K into my training plan. ( I haven't really talked to the Wife about Vancouver - she already thinks I'm nuts, and telling her I want to do 2 Marathons and at least 1 Half next year will have her calling the guys in White Coats.)

So for now, it's back to just running for running's sake. I'm going to be hitting the gym for three days a week and running on the off days. I know there's a six-pack hiding under that last layer of fat - I'm determined to find it.

(Plus - and I won't make any promises - I should be able to blog more, now that I'm not going to be running 5 days a week. Believe it when it happens.)


Thursday, October 15, 2009

Tattoo You.

I'm going to get another Tattoo.

As most of you who read this blog have come to understand, I have become slightly obsessed with running. ("No Shit!" You say - "Tell us something new!")

And as some of you may know, I already have a tattoo - the Japanese symbol for "Love" on my chest. As that Tattoo was wrought from pain and anguish (some of you even know that story), so this Tattoo will rise from pain and success.

I've decided to get the Roman Numerals for 26.2 (XXVI) tattooed vertically down my right calf, and at the bottom have my finish time for my marathon.

"But wait!" You say, "The Roman's didn't use decimals, you schmuck!". I know - I'm going to get a smaller "II" symbol tucked in beside the "I" - Trust me - I've drawn it out already, and it'll look cool.

And though it may seem crazy and weird to get a running tattoo on my leg, my reasoning is thus: I did it - I accomplished what few do, and no matter what else happens in my life, I will have that to be proud of. And it doesn't matter how many more I run, or whether my time improves or decreases - this was my first, and I want to remember it. (The only other thing I might ever get would be something involving my kids, but that's about it.)

The only thing that sucks is I have to wait until November 26th to get it done - the only reputable Tattoo Artist in town that I would trust my skin to is booked up until then.

I'm sure I'll describe the procedure and post photos when it happens.. But for now, I can't wait.


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Good Mail.

Most days, your average Inbox is so full of spam and other assorted debris that it's hard to sort out the good news from the ENLARGE YOUR PENIS NOW!!! - type stuff.

My Telus-assigned email address is the one I use for all my junk. Anyone who needs an actual address I can respond to, but I think is going to send me copious amounts of crap - they get that one. I check it once a week, and it's usually to just shift-select all-delete.

The Real Me uses Gmail.

Even with that, I still get some junk - newsletters I subscribed to but don't read, the one guy I know who still sends out FWD:FWD:FWD:FWD stuff, (even though I've asked him not to), and the occasional spam because the Wife signed up for something and put in the wrong address.

But today was a good mail day. I received 4 emails that brightened my afternoon:
  • A reminder from the local running store about the 10K I'm in this weekend. (I placed 4th in my age group last year - going to try and better that)
  • Same local running store sending out a congratulatory email to all the local runners in the RVM - sure, it's a bulk email, but everyone gets to see my name in lights - as a finisher.
  • Message from the Event Photographers that my race-day photos are online. This one's tough because my finish-line photo looks realllly bad.
  • And a confirmation email from the Tidemark that my 6th row tickets to see the Trews are in. (Oh yeah, baby - the Trews.)
So believe me when I say- checking my email, while purely habitual and borderline obsessive-compulsive, was very rewarding today.

And I also got this one from a Nigerian Prince who needs my help to transfer millions of dollars - this could be good.


Tuesday, October 13, 2009


It's done.

26.2 miles, 42.2 kilometers, 16 weeks of training. And it rocked.

The Royal Victoria Marathon made me feel like I can accomplish anything. I'm still on cloud nine - not only did I meet my goals, I blew them out of the water.

As you can tell from the certificate on the right, I finished in 3:28:20 - almost 2 minutes faster than I figured my best possible time could be. I placed 402nd out of the 2611 who finished the marathon, and 63rd in my age group. (considering that 12 of the first 25 finishers were my age or older, that's a good sign.)

But it was a great day and I had an awesome time. Even when my calves and hammies started cramping up at the 40K mark, I kept going. I paused to walk twice, but my determination to run the race wouldn't let me do it for more than 30 seconds. (I'm stubborn that way.)

It's a beautiful run - from the Seawall to the Parliament Buildings, from Oak Bay to running through the golf course, (even ran by the Twin's Comic Book Store!) it was just amazing to be surrounded by people just as crazy and dedicated as I am.

Some of my memories from the run:
  • The line up for the bathrooms - listening to some ladies debate the moralities of sneaking into the wheelchair porta-pottie.
  • The Elvis Impersonator on a flatbed truck in Oak Bay - The King kept me going..
  • The clothing strewn on the side of the road as runners peeled off thier outer layers.
  • The fact that only 1 in 200 runners can hit the trash can at any water station. (which is why we run, instead of being in the NBA.)
  • The running club offering "Beer Shots" at the 38K mark.
  • Eating my first gelpak - was too much like really sweet chocolate pudding.
  • Wondering if being struck by a golf ball means you get to subtract time off your finish..
  • Seeing 3:2x:xx as I came toward the finish line - fuck the pain - I ran.
  • Wanting to hug the lady as she put my finisher's medal around my neck.. (I didn't.)
  • The greatest chocolate milk/donut combo ever as I walked out of the food area after the race.
Overall, an amazing experience.
I'll post the photos as soon as I can - with selective editing - no one wants to see me grimacing in pain.

Now, about next year...

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Counting Down.

It's 10 days to go until the Royal Victoria Marathon.

And I think my taper madness has set in.

I feel good, I'm confident about finishing - but in the back of my mind, there's this slight shred of doubt about my hip flexor. I think that it may be the only thing that will hold me back from achieving my goal.

And I'm just really excited about the run. My nervous energy is a slight to behold - I've become someone who can't seem to sit still. I normally don't sleep well the night before any of my long runs - I'm sure I'll need to be knocked out the night of the 10th.

With my infrequent posting history as of late, I'm not sure if this will be the only post you see before the big day - I'm hoping not, but who's to say?

If it is, wish me luck - I'm going to try and make 26.2 my bitch.