Let's dive into it shall we! Today marked the official start to my spring racing schedule. With Boston being a terrible let down, and a big fat embarrassing You Suck, Better Luck Next Time lingering in my thoughts, I had to lay off the partying for a few days and jump into a race. What a better way to do this than running a Half-Marathon on home turf! I took one full week off from any type of physical activity after Beantown. That is unless you count walking to the fridge and jogging home from the bars a good method of staying fit. It wasn't though, I've put on 3 pounds since Boston. After the week off of being a glutinous blob, it was time to stop having fun and start pounding the pavement again. I ran 4 times before the race today and my quads were effed for 3 of those runs. Like really effed. Felt like the same agonizing ice pick jabbing pain that the running gremlins of Boston were torturing me with 2 weeks prior. So I went and payed a visit to my buddy Richard Lebert. Richard is an RMT who used to work with the Fanshawe Cross Country team. That dude has some strong hands man, he was friggen' ripping my legs apart! I guess I saw Richard a few nights before at a concert while I was all pissed up and told him I was coming in to get some work done on my legs. When I showed up to his office, he asked me how my night was. I had no idea what he was talking about, I need to stop drinking so much. I have yet to go for a massage that actually feels nice. I can't believe I pay for massages that make me squeal and toss around the bed like a little ferret, what is this shit! The next massage is definitely going to be from a Sweedish Mama, with comforting music, one of those majestic water fountains flowing in the background, pictures of unicorns, and a jar of cocoa butter.
Holy hell do I ever get off topic. So I decided to sign up for the McFarlan Rowands Half-Marathon here in London for shits and giggs. My teammates Mike and Rick, whom are identical twins, were also running this damn thing so I went out for a run on the route with them a few days ago. The route is weird in my opinion. To many turns up in Old North, the race goes into Gibbons Park twice (I hate running on bike paths for some reason) and is just an overall C- in my eyes. So with these junk filled legs and a C- race course looming, I didn't know what to expect. I got 3 hours of sleep last night, was nervous as hell, and I'm not sure why. Normally I get nervous before a race, everyone does. You have to be a rare breed of Sicko to not get nervous before the gun goes off. I was reaching new levels of anxiety though. I was nervously impaired and was hesitant to get behind the wheel of my car to drive down to the start line. I think it was because I knew at some point in the race, I was going to feel Boston shitty again. That little bastard canary voice in my brain was fluttering around and putting nasty thoughts in my head. He's like the Tweetie Bird, only the demon version.
So as I toed the line it looked like I was going to be running out front with defending champ Matt Suda from London Runner and what appeared to be a Kenyan looking dude. Kenyan dude was an older guy, fit as hell though. I was more worried about Suda though because his PB is like 90 seconds faster than mine going into the race, he was the favourite, and I had no idea who our other friend was. I found out after the race that Old Fit Kenyan Sir is Nelson Ndereva, who ran 2:10:58 in the marathon back in 2001 (Hopefully its the same guy). So the gun goes off and Suda does the leading for 2 miles with Nelson behind him and myself tucked in back there too. The first two miles were into the wind and Suda was doing more work then he should have been doing, so I decided to give him a hand and lead for a bit. The race goes by Charles St. on Wharncliffe, where my party people live. My party people were out tearing up the Richmond scene last night and told me they would be out in lawn chairs to watch me run by Charles St. this morning. Do you think these clowns were there as I passed by at 8:05am? Not a friggen' chance! These losers were probably drunk, smelly, and knocked out. As we entered UWO at 5k, it was still the 3 of us, Nelson tucked in behind. Matt and I started making a gap on Nelson in Gibbons and the cyclists up front were on their walkie talkies saying "We have a runner dropping off". I was excited to drop a kenyan 7k into the race, but I was concerned that I was going out to fast and he was going to reel my ass in later on.
Now we get to the mass confusion and fuckery that started happening. I was feeling good and started pulling away from Matt on St. James Street. The two pace bikes up front dragging us along the course had no idea where we were! I realized we were totally going the wrong way and I was getting pretty damn mad! Shouting at these two guys! Where the hell are we! I started realizing that shit was too good to be true. I thought this was their way of saying, "Not so fast kid, we're going to intentionally screw you over". Such bullshit yet again. I was cursing at this point, and the canary in my brain was effing with me big time. Here is a link to Happy Gilmour trying to go to his happy place, then that sly, greasy bastard Shooter McGavin rains on his parade. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DWKijJ9n-VQ This is how I felt man.
With about a 50m lead on Suda, I was now concerned that he was going to blow past me as I was taking my anger out on the two lead cyclists, wasting all my energy yelling back and forth with them. I so wanted to find a big rock like Happy Gilmour and his caddie and just huck it into a pond, that would have made me feel better. I came to a jog at the middle of an intersection in Old North to ask Matt what the hell was going on. I think he was just as pissed as I was. What a god damn nightmare, it couldn't have been scripted worse than this. I just had a growing lead and I needed to slow down to see if he was thinking what I was thinking. I've heard of this shit happening before in races, but never thought it would happen to me. Lumani Luck as my buddies like to call it.
So I started running my balls off again to get back onto my goal pace, but I knew a PB was definitely out of the question now and winning the race was all I cared about. As I turned onto Windemere off of Adelaide I was happy to have some family support watching me grit my teeth and throw down the hammer and start grinding. The gap was getting larger as I headed back into UWO and my buddy Robbie Timmerman followed me on his bike through Gibbons before some race official told him to stop pacing me! Robbie told me I had a 1 minute lead and I started feeling Boston Shitty, real bad. The final 3k was a friggen' roller coaster ride. I had nothing left in my legs and I was letting out some pretty loud moans, HAHA! Canary Bird was back to screw with my head and was pretty much letting me know that either Nelson or Matt were about to creep up on my ass and I would be heartbroken yet again. As I flailed my arms and swam all the way down Central Ave, almost drowning, I didn't even care about winning anymore. I just needed to finish this shit, I was beginning to wobble around like a douche bag. I had to start digging deep. It's amazing how you can feel so good for 18km, then POW, you get smacked in the legs with a crowbar and feel like you've funneled a bottle of Gin. I ended up stopping my watch at 13.1 miles (the actual distance of a half marathon) in a time of 1:12:37. This was only 6 seconds slower than my PB, however with the extra 600m we ran in Old North, I ended up crossing the line in 1:14:44, taking first place. Nelson finished strong coming in 16 seconds later, then Matt taking 3rd.
I'm happy with the win and surprised with myself that after 2 weeks of drinking and being a stain on the couch, I haven't lost that much fitness. A lot of easy running this week is going to be on the agenda before I start training for an 8k that is on June 22nd. Shout outs to my dude Clint Smith, winning the 10k this morning in 33 low on a tough course. Watch out for Clint ladies and gents, he is going to be so legit come cross season, it's not even gonna be fair! Brandon Graham also from FXC coming second in the 10k, Coach Loney running a fast one and showing how fit he is for an old man, my boy Flush from FXC winning the 5k, and the twins Mike and Rick running huge PBs in the half. Overall a great day for the Fanshawe Cross Country boys! Thanks to everyone down at the race supporting me, the race organizers and officials, Runners Choice, the people at the medical tent, Dill, Spits (Mayonnaise Allergy), and Tferg for coming 30 minutes after I finished (They were hungover as hell and looked worse than I did) and my fam. No hard feelings to the two cyclists either, shit happens, we'll get it right next time! My 3 buddies mentioned above took me out to Jack Astors this afternoon. We ate some grub, shot the shit, downed some pitchers, and Tferg bought me a shot of Gin at 1pm. Who orders a shot of Gin at Jack Astors? Is that even real?
|Brandon Graham (Left in green/orange) Clint Smith (Blue Elite Feet singlet, pink compression sleeves and Overall Boss Swag) Coach Loney (White singlet behind Clint) 10km race|
Here are the splits from the race:
Link to a video that I am interviewed in for a few seconds....
Link to a video that I am interviewed in for a few seconds....
I have my iPod back. You suck Cindy, better luck next time.