Monday, June 26, 2017

Marathon training rule 2: Surviving the Treadmill

Why is their a gun in my cup holder of my treadmill? I didn't load it did I? Please tell me I didn't load it! Lets not check maybe I ran out of bullets. Lets take our mind off it somehow. Lets looks to see how long we have been running it must be like 4 or 5 hours by now. 3 minutes, how the heck can it be just 3 minutes. This stupid thing is broken. I bet the gun isn't broken. Stupid treadmill. This must be how hamsters feel. Why isn't their a support group for hamsters and their wheels? Does PETA protest at pet stores the sale of hamster wheels, they should. I am going to write a letter to PETA just after I caress this gun a little. 4 minutes down, six bajillion to go.

Running on the treadmill if you train for a fall marathon almost always becomes an evil necessity. These little horrible torture devices are only slightly better than running outside when its 110 degrees, only slightly. Lately I have become very picky about my treadmill's because not all treadmills or gyms with them or workout rooms are the same. But unless you want to roast to death being followed by vultures until you swallow your pride and knock on someones door and ask for a drink of water you get on one and try and pass the time as best as you can as one treadmill minute is equal to ten running outside. Here is a ranking of treadmills in different environments from worst to best to help you make it a little better.

1. The Hotel treadmill. By far the worse treadmill you can find not because it might be cheap which it typically is or that it was bought in the 1980's which isn't uncommon but because of the room they put it in. Hotel treadmills are found in tiny little rooms with no circulation. Its like a mixture of hot yoga on a treadmill that can be so rickety you think Fred Flintstone once ran on it. Let me paint you a picture you are out of town on business in a seedy little trucking town where outside running doesn't seem like a good idea. You head down to the treadmill alas your training plan calls for speedwork. You don't even bother putting on a shirt because you know two miles in it will weigh 10 pounds so soaked in sweat you will look like you jumped in the pool fully dressed. If you could run fully naked you would but last time you did that the hotel manager had strong words for you. Half way through you have soaked the treadmill where it looks like you were having a water gun fight and all of sudden you slip and almost go off the back of it as the treadmill is so slick with your sweat it has now become a slip and slide. You pause the treadmill and towel it down so you don't die when you start running again. You finish your workout and our glad planes don't let you bring your treadmill gun with you because either you or the treadmill would have got a gap in its arse.

2. The complex treadmill. If you are like me you might live in a complex with a treadmill. Hey free and close to home but just like the hotel treadmill they are in a little room made by the devil, seriously I am sure hell is just a tiny room with no circulation as you run on a treadmill. Only plus sides are is it only a two minute walk back to your house and you can bring your own fan which only makes it slightly better. Or even better yet half way through the run you can hop off the treadmill and say eff this I don't care if its 200 degrees outside I am finishing outside. Unless you make the mistake of texting your coach to say this and he says suck it up buttercup get your ass back on the treadmill and you go stick your head in the kitchen sink than finish the run back on the treadmill to make him proud. But he will never be proud of you but you do it anyways.

3. Gym treadmills. Not all Gym treadmills are built the same. My favorite gym treadmill is on the second floor of the community center with wide open areas and tons of air flow. Its almost like running outside with AC for the airflow. Yea the treadmill is a little rickety and old and one of the treadmills shocks you if you dare put headphones into it to try and watch tv laughing at the fool who thought he could pass the time while on the hamster wheel. But the airflow is amazing, give me that airflow and that hotel treadmill I once ran on that was possessed by the treadmill gremlins and kept speeding up and changing incline for no reason like a bucking bronco trying to throw me off and I'd be happy. The gym treadmill usually has tv or a movie playing and depending on the gym some airflow, but the treadmills aren't well maintained and thousand of people have rode them into the ground. But do remember if someone gets on the treadmill next to you at the gym its a race you must race them and first person to fall off the back or puke loses. Pass the time efficiently.

4. Your home treadmill. You sir are a sick bastard how much did you pay to be able to torture yourself at will in your own home, seek help. Ok seriously with these you can set up 50 fans and get all the airflow you need, set the thermostat to 40 degrees until the kids yell dad we are out of blankets. And the best part is some strange person (me most likely) hasn't sweated on it so much you think they had a supersoaker filled with human sweat with them. You don't have to go anywhere to run and you can run anytime in front of your tv or in a basement surrounded by all your lovely medals from when you got to run outside.

So make friends with the treadmill, make sure the gun is not loaded, and remember if someone is running beside you its a race.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Seriously don't die, rule one of marathon training

In rule one of how to survive a marathon we went over an important step hydration and how to avoid buzzards. Before we move onto rule two we really should hit on rule one a little more.

Imagine you are running on the surface of the sun, you thought you brought enough water but your desire to sleep in versus running outside when the temps say 110 is always battling itself. When the alarm so rudely buzzes at like 4 something in the morning when no sane person alive would get up much less get up to run 15-20 miles you turn that little nuisance off. You doze for a few more hours before you finally say well dang it lets get up and try not to die. Somewhere along the way you run out of water and the sun beats down on you and you are pretty sure you are going to die. The vultures and buzzards are following you, circling above you letting out a kakaw every now and then to let you now when you die your flesh will not go to waste. So nice of them to let you know this kakaw we will eat your flesh kakaw you look like a happy meal kakaw. Here are some tips on how to find extra water when your sure you are going to die. All of these have been tried and have worked, sometimes multiple times.

1. Lawn sprinklers, not just for kids to run in when its hot or water to make green grass in a desert but lovely on the lips. Scales on a 1-5. Reliability scale: 2 (most don't water during the middle of the day as you shouldn't so you have to find the sneaky ones who just don't care about the rules, damn the man). Taste: 3 (who knows where this water is coming from and its usually pretty warm). Overall 3 (just because you can also run in it afterwords).

2. Discarded half full water bottles. Now many people like to train on marathon courses and the sane ones also like to run in the morning and do some silly thing called water drops so by the middle of the day plenty to be found. If you are running on a marathon course these bottles are lovely, just don't drink the yellow ones. If night running hold the bottles up to the moon to check for a hint of yellow. If no moon close your eyes and pray to whatever god you want its not a yellow bottle. Reliability 2 (outside of marathon courses and water drops these bottles are a lot less infrequent and cannot be trusted as well either). Taste 2 (almost always piss warm and in the case of the yellow ones probably piss tasting as well). Overall 2 (there is a lot of shame in drinking from someones discarded water bottle but get over that quick buttercup).

3. Knocking on someones door and asking for a drink of water. The first time you do this you will find yourself in a new low of despair so thirsty you aren't afraid to knock on someone's door and beg for a drink. But soon you don't mind because the buzzards won't stop following you. Reliability 4 (lots of houses to be found typically and most sane people are indoors enjoying AC). Taste 4 (the water is lovely with a little shame to wash it down). Overall 4 (yea people look at you weird but man that water is good).

4. Gas Stations. This seems the simplest but a lot of times your route doesn't lead you pass many gas stations. Sure you get a few stares if you have ditched your shirt and look like some crazed lunatic from a bugs bunny cartoon escaping the desert but that water is ice cold and so yummy. Reliability 2 (I just don't seem to plan routes around these places). Taste 5 (that stuff is ice cold and in AC you may not wanna leave the AC). Overall 4 (just for the AC).

5. Water fountains. Unless you are on the trails the city provides these are almost impossible to find and then for some reason they turn them off turn during the winter. We live in the desert not the arctic white north leave us our water gall darn it. Reliability 1 (just too hard to find). Taste 5 (I don't know what it but these are always ice cold and yummy). Overall 2 (great when you can find them).

Until next time don't drink the yellow water.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Rule Number 1 of Marathon training, don't die

Its a blog, at one time everyone had a blog including me, wait I still do have a blog. I just never update it, probably post things people don't care about or do race reports. Well lets change this up a bit, maybe we can stay on this horse for a little bit this time. Last time I posted I was talking about goals and I still haven't met those goals. I might be chasing that darn sub 4 until I am trying to get it running with a walker and beating people out of the way with my cane but gall darn it I never seem to stop chasing it. I have missed triathlons this year after a year of marathon training, you dirty little race that bests me every time I will beat you or die trying, I am giving it one more valiant effort for sub 4 at Saint George marathon even with a coach this time. So next year I will be going back to triathlons but I am chasing that sub 4 one more time, one more round with the devil, one more round of trying to beat it before it beats me.

I got some crazy goals for next year already, yes I will be doing a full ironman be it me doing it solo style on my own using gas stations as aid stations and drinking from sprinklers (so please leave your sprinklers on). The idea being to finally get to do the old full Saint George ironman course which has haunted my dreams or maybe its my nightmares from 2011 to now of always wanting to do it. That or doing a sanctioned course with those weird people who come out and volunteer and cheer us crazies on but it will happen. But for now lets changes this blog up. I am an emotional runner, I run with my heart and not my brain. I run too fast when I shouldn't, I run on days when I shouldn't, I end up lying on the ground taking a nap in the middle of a half marathon sick as a dog with the flu. It's who am I and what I do so lets make this the blog of what not to do.

Running is simple right, you just need a pair of shoes and not even those sometimes some people just run barefoot, and miles of road ahead of you. Lace up and hit the roads, just got off work, let's run. No one likes to wake up to run early, run when you can. Somewhere along the road you caught that rare virus called raceitis. And now deep in its clutches you have signed up for a marathon. A marathon to be held the first week of October which means you gotta train during the summer. I also happen to live on the surface of the sun come July and August its true just ask anyone they will tell you as they cook their scrambled eggs for breakfast on the sidewalks.

So going to the trusty internet I find a plan by some man Called Hal. Hal seems like a trusty name right, I mean that's like a grandpa's name or that cool uncle that sets off fireworks in the street. Good ole Hal. Hal thinks you should run these things called long runs which start at like 10 miles and work its way up to 20 miles. I am starting to trust Hal less and less what kind of lunatic runs 20 miles on a Sunday. Maybe I was wrong that Hal seems like a seedy character after all. Oh well lets do this Hal, wait wasn't the computer from that Kubrik film called Hal, don't let me out a cargo bay door Hal.

At first not too bad I've run four half marathons after all I can do these 15miles heck doing three five mile loops around my house isn't too bad throw a few gatorade on the window sill and some waters and you are good. But man everytime you pass your house and am like crap there is AC in there and my TV isn't 5 or 10 good enough, NO, lets keep doing this. Wait there is my house again, dang it, Hal you suck. Maybe we should try running marathon course, I mean get dropped off and run home then we don't have to pass the house so often and its promises of AC. Hal is saying we need to run 18 miles perfect, Veyo is 18 miles from my house, but I don't wanna run on my birthday on Saturday lets run on Sunday, yea Sunday sounds great. But I don't wanna get up early the day after my birthday lets get up around 8:30 then we are running by 9 or so yea thats a good idea lets do this.

Was that a buzzard? Are buzzards following me? Why is it so hot? When did I run out of water? What is water? Crap I have forgotten the taste of water? I know that buzzard is following me! Why didn't I bring more water? 32 ounces of water should have been enough where did it all go? So hot! So thirsty! We've been running what 4 miles without water now, that's not too bad no one can die from just 4 miles without water right? Only 4 more miles to go? That's what 57 miles without water right? Wait no 4? Crap I can't math anymore? 8 the number is 8 Regis, what do I win? Can I trade my winnings for a glass of water Vanna? Oh my gosh is that a church!?! It's Sunday, they have church on Sunday in August right? I am going into that church its gotta be open. Oh my gosh its open its open wheres the drinking fountain? Don't you judge me you tie wearing freaks I will stick my head in this drinking fountain if I want. Ahhhhhhhhhh. When did I take off my shirt? Who cares WATER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rule number 1 of marathon training, always bring more water than you need. Especially if for some reason you start running at 9am when the temps are going to be 109 that day, drop that water everywhere pretend you are throwing pokeballs and trying to catch pikachu. Until next time, yes I was that homeless looking shirtless sweaty crazy person that wandered into your church and proceeded to dunk his head in your drinking fountain and lap from it like a dog, no shame in this game.