Although I had previously mentioned that I wouldn’t participate in these stupidly long fun runs again.. lo and behold, here we find ourselves. My brother in law, the Jangulator, and I did this 14km fun run last year. He loved it. I hated it. He signed up again. I did not. He called me a pussy. I digressed. Signed up. And joined 14,000 other suckers..
Preparation: Due to a recent challenge set by housemate Dennis, I had been running quite a fair bit in recent months. But it was never more than 6 and a half clicks at a time; that I usually ran about 2 to 3 times a week. I still thought that anything over 10km was just too hard basket and I never had any intention of doing this 14km City2Sea. But Jangulator called me a pussy.. like a child, I was insulted.. So I checked my calendar to make sure I didn’t have anything on (these runs are always scheduled for Sunday mornings, thus wrecking your whole weekend). Fortunately, my schedule was clear… and I signed up. Aint nobody callin me a pussy. Next day, a message from a mate – 30th birthday drinks… The day before the run… Fuck. Oh well. Small hurdle. Press on. The fortnight leading up to the race I decided I wouldn’t drink. It took me all but three days to determine that this was a stupid idea. So I drank anyways. But. I never got proper pissed. Yeah. that should help.
Lead up: Strong. I continued with my challenge of running home sub 35. Smashed it in a controversial 34.43 (Dennis is yet to pay up the free meal). Chucked in a couple of 10k runs in anticipation of the extra distance. Didn’t drink… much. Felt pretty good. Followed a pre-race diet the days leading up to the race. You can find a whole bunch of crap online, regarding dieting before a big race. Carbo loading (eating a shit load of carbs in the days leading up for energy) and all the rest of it. I mostly never adhered to this rubbish. But this year I thought I’d at least give it a crack. Wouldn’t hurt I thought. The day before the race was indeed my mate’s 30th, which I chose to attend. I intended not to drink. But couldn’t help myself and ended up having a few beers anyway. What? Beer is a carb.. and then wisely, phantomed from the party before any real damage was done.
Race morning: Weather forecast was 22 and sunny. Last year, the heat killed me. So when I woke up to find the air crisp. I was quite relieved. We arrived nearly an hour early before the race started. Perfect. Time to get a good stretch in. And then with about 20min before the start.. it hit me. The sudden urge to take a shit. In runner’s circles you may have heard of the term “runner’s trot” – It’s basically a dire and urgent need to take a shit during long periods of strenuous physical activity, because of the amount of prolonged strain on your body. Here is an example:
So in fear of becoming this poor, poor poor bastard. I quickly bolted for the loo. Crisis averted.
The start: As I never intended to run this year, until Jangulator called me a pussy, I unfortunately had signed up late. The start is broken up into sections. Seeded and preferred runners go first (The hardcore runners who aim to win the damn thing and run sub 60 minutes). Then the red group next (serious casual runners aiming to run sub 80). Then finally, the general green group (runners/walkers who don’t really give a shit about time and just want to finish). This is the group I wanted to join. Its by far the best perve. Full of fit young females who generally take care of themselves, but aren’t hardcore fitness freaks. Unfortunately, the green start was full when I signed up and I had to join the red group (sub 80). This made me nervous. Although I had been running a fair bit recently. I would hardly call myself serious, and cracking 80 min for 14kms generally isn’t suited for the part time runner – full time smoker/drinker. But what could you do..
St. Kilda road (km 1 – 4): Usually starting from the general pack, the first km is fairly slow as the crowd slowly dissipates and you are able to find open space. Not this year. Starting with the serious red fuckers, we pretty much started running as soon as we crossed the starting line. I have a pretty good steady pace heading down St. Kilda rd. Maybe this is going to be easier than I thought and all my pre-race nerves was unwarranted. I quickly notice though that the talent around me is.. terrible. Not a looker in sight. Just some hardcore, middle-aged runners. Nevertheless. I march on. Somewhere around the 3 km mark, I have an urge to take a leak. Not to worry. I’ll just block it out and hope it it goes away… It does not. Fuck.. Thankfully, theres portaloos just after the 4km mark. But I have to wait. And probably lose a minute or two.
Albert Park Lake (km 4 – 10): Last year, this was the section that hit me the hardest. This year was no different. There’s no shade around the lake, and this is when the sun gets to you the most. So you try and look for other distractions to get you through.. Hmmmm there’s a good looking ass. Finally! A girl that doesn’t look like Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2. This bunny should get me through the next few km.. Or maybe not. You’re a little too quick for my liking. Why are you going so fast?.. fuck. I struggle to keep up and back off.. No worries babe. I’ll see you at the finish.
Fitzroy st and Beacy pde (km 10 – 14): As you run down Fitzroy st, you know you’re well over halfway and almost home. But this just makes it harder. By this stage, your legs are jelly and you’re basically just running on fumes. This is when your mind starts to turn on you. Each km marker seems ridicuolously far and surely, they’ve made some sort of mistake.. Fuck. where the fuck is the marker??? surely ive ran over a km since the last mark? You guys have fucked up. Why are you fucking with me????.. Yes! drinks station! I grab 2 cups of water and a cup of gatorade. I completely miss and end up wearing it instead. Fuck. Fuck this. Why the fuck did you sign up for this shit? Because he called you a pussy? You are a pussy. You’re a fucking idiot 2.0. You need to die. I hope you become 3.0. Idiot!.. This inner battle continues for the remainder of the race.
But as you finally hit the 13k marker, you realise you’re home.. Yes! 2.0 you are a fucking legend. Fuck the haters. I never doubted you for a second. After the race, I’m going to get you liquored up. You deserve it. I’m sorry I ever doubted you. You are by far superior to 1.0..
The finish: With about 500m to go, I see 3 girls running together. Naturally.. I speed up and focus on my running technique. I’m absolutely struggling at this stage and this kills me.. you idiot… I cross the line in an official 79.55. I cracked the 80. Better than half the male field in my age bracket. Also beating last year’s time by over 5 minutes. I quickly grab my medal. Grab 2 drinks. Light up a dart. Head to the pub. Drink until I cant feel feelings anymore. And promise myself, that I will never ever do this, ever the fuck again.
Yeah. I’m a pussy. What of it?