Monday, January 14, 2008

Marathon Blues

I told you I was going to do my first MARATHON and I didn't get any responses. Nothing like, DON'T DO IT!!!
As you may know, yesterday, I did the Disney marathon with 18,000 of my closest friends .
Lets go back to last November when I broke my wrist playing basketball. I got to meet my new orthopedic surgeon and he said, "you are a moron, you are old and you are a DENTIST for crying out loud" in not so many words.
It was at this time I felt like I was getting fat a high rate of speed, and I needed to do something about it.
So I took up running. Okay maybe not running, jogging. I have always hated running and told everybody who ran that I thought they were loners and masochists.
I use to run about 1 mile before I looked like I was shot, "...go on without me." I hated every minute of it.
Then I found someone at church (who also lives in my neighborhood) that was a runner. I never knew how much easier running was with a partner. (you have to call this person you run with your "running partner" not just "partner" could lead someone to believe other things about you, "not that there is anything wrong with that").
We started at 2 miles, then we pushed 3, and so on. Next thing you know we are at 7 miles (and we got this far because we got lost doing 6) after about 5 months.
My "running partner" is 48 and wanted to do a marathon before he was 50. I got a email talking about marathon and half marathon training. I talked to him about it. Next thing I know we were signed up.
This was a 6 month training program that was three times a week. Two short runs during the week and a long run on the weekend. We ended up doing our weekday stuff around the neighborhood and did the weekend run with the group.
The group met at 6am the first day in June to do a 10 mile jaunt. Trial by fire.
I did it. I felt like I could do this. Next thing you know I am doing 12, then 14. I don't mean to blow over this because, before this weekend, going from 10-12 was the hardest run of them all.
Next thing you know I was getting up at 4:30 to do 16 miles. Two month later I am getting up at 3:30 , at 40 degrees (I know you northern people chuckle at this one, but this is fricking cold to Floridians) to do 20 miles.
People always say if you do 20 you can do the marathon. This is the biggest bunch of horse crap you will ever hear. It is not like when you finish 20 you say, "I feel great, lets just mosey on over and do 6 more miles." No it is more like, "get me to the car, I need to go to the hospital."
Now if the hospital is 6.2 miles away we may have something here.
On an aside, I did train to 24 miles and I felt great about my training.
Now we get to yesterday.
The race (I love how they call it a race, so I guess I can say I came in 3000 place) was on Sunday morning. I stayed on Disney property because they recommend that you get to the race area at 4am. This means a 3:30 wake up call (it is funny that they tell you to get a good night sleep, but want you there at 4pm. Things that make you go Hmmm.)
I carbed up the night before with a pasta dinner. I had my energy drink in the morning and I was there right on time. What a zoo. It was organized chaos.
Me and my "running partners" from the training group met before the race. We were then asked to move to the start. One thing that struck me was the amount of port-o-potties, I mean I saw at least a hundred of them before you got to the starting area. But yet people, men and women were darting into the woods to pee.
I digress.
The race started, it was tough going. I found one of the hardest thing to do was running with so many other people. You expand a lot of energy trying no to run over people or avoid being squished. You start in corrals. Now my corral had about 2000 people that registered to finish at the same time (does that give you an idea of how crowed it was). It did eventually thin out and I finished with about 50 people within 15 feet of me.
I felt great at about 14-18 miles. But things started to go at about mile 21. My lungs felt great but my legs, more specifically, my calves started to reject the whole thing. They would start to cramp up, and I mean bad. It was like someone stabbing an ice pick in my right calve. So I started to walk more to try to work it out.
Then my mind started to go. I was getting real irritable. People started to walk, but they would walk in the middle of a 4 foot path. You would think the courteous thing to do would be to move to the outside. I found myself wanting to either shout at them or just go up to them and throw a serious elbow. But as irritable as I was my legs were my primary issue. So all the running and the training could not help you through the last 5 miles of this race.
I eventually finished the race at 4:30 on the nose. Yes, that is four hours and thirty minutes. I did however beat the four other guys I trained with. Not that I was bragging but they all had the same issues with cramping. Maybe it was the conditions, 72 degrees and 95% humidity. It was like running in pea soup.
But what no one warned me of is the emotion at the finish line. I can not explain it. I finished the race and just started to cry. I wasn't happy or sad. I just was a wreck. I mean, I was a wreck physically but I guess I was also an emotional wreck. I almost completely lost it with the woman who gave me the metal. It was all I could do to not break down and ask her to hold me.
But when I did find my wife it was like a river. It is very hard to explain. But when I did talk to the other guys, one of them said he was the same way.

Last thing, but I warn you if you are queues when it comes to body parts turn away now, this part may get a little graphic.
I think we are close enough now, after 6 blogs and all, that I can talk to you about some intimate stuff.
One problem I had when I first started was chaffing. I was chaffing in spots I didn't know people could chafe. When I got home from that first 10 mile run my nipples were on fire. So I was introduced to stuff called Body Glide. It looks exactly like deodorant but it is hard Vaseline. You just apply to the areas you shorts and shirt will rub.
When I run I use running shorts, yes the really short ones (my wife tells me my legs are hot).
But for long runs, I use a longer style of running shorts because they have pockets for PowerBar gels (affectionately known as GUs).
Well, apparently these type of shorts, during long runs, will ball up in between your legs. Then they will rise up on you. Well, not to be graphic but I chaffed. I mean I chaffed bad. But you don't really feel it until you come down a little. I didn't really feel it until I got home and I sensed some discomfort. Then I took a shower and ZAUWWY!!. I had chaffed up UNDER THERE.
I was in so much pain, that night. I laid down in front of a fan and just prayed for bedtime.
I was not a pretty sight. But the worst part was my loving wife asked if she could do anything for me. "Well," I said "I am really hurting and I need some talc powder." She said, "Sure, where do you need it?"
Needless to say, our relationship went to another level last night.

Wow. I have to stop this is getting a little long. I really enjoyed writing today. I hope you enjoyed reading. I mean life is just funny sometimes.


Mike Fennema said...

i feel like our relationship has reached an entirely new level...and i don't know if it is a good thing.

on a serious note, you are an inspiration to all the non-runners out there. congrats on your first marathon.

Anonymous said...

I'm happy to say that I feel like your marathon run was a real team effort between us. After all, remember when I let you clean up at my place after one of your Saturday runs?

Wish I could have been there to video tape you at the finish line!!

Buckeyedental said...

Thought you should check out
Kim Shaw


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