Sunday, March 13, 2011

Stupidity . . . and now conceit . . .

Here was my Facebook post after today's run . . .
Oh Marathon Gods . . . hear my prayer!

I come before you a humble and apologetic man. I admit to you my conceit. Never again will I say such things as " . . . finally tapering so all I have to run Sunday is a marathon!"

I promise from this point forward I will always try to preface the word 'marathon' with the word 'frickin' or some similar adjective. I will show respect for 26.2 miles . . . always.

Need I say more?  Probably not . . . but I will.
What have I been thinking?  I've actually been trying to convince myself that I have more than 'a snowball's chance in hell' of doing well at the Umstead 100.  My training runs have been going great!  And I've been gaining confidence!  Plus, everywhere I turn I keep hearing how a 100 mile run is mostly mental.  Think positive thoughts . . . picture success . . . I will do this!  So, I've been trying to use all these positive thoughts.
Well . . . I guess I even had convinced myself!
Yesterday at the Canal 1/2 Marathon I made the comment that I was starting my taper and all I had to run was a marathon on Sunday.  Talk about conceited . . .  "Oh yea . . . I can run a long way!"
 Well, today I had my wake-up call.  I finished my 26.2 mile run in an impressive 6:30!  That's right friends and neighbors . . . 6:30!  And I pretty much was reduced to a 'tuck-tail' walk the last 6-7 miles!  I suck.
Four bathroom stops didn't help.  But they weren't the cause of my personal meltdown.  It also got a little warm today.  But heat wasn't the cause of my meltdown either.  Quite frankly, I have no frickin' idea why I did so badly today.

And I was humbled!  I had total confidence that this would be a fairly easy, confidence-building run.  After all, it was 9 miles less then last weekend and on that 35 mile run I felt good at the end.  Not today.  Today, I barely made it back to my car before I died!No confidence building here today!

Before the run I was having fun talking about the fourth running of the Rocky Mount Marathon and how I was going to set a course record today.  Well . . . I guess I did that (new course!), but there wasn't a positive feeling about anything.  No fun today.   Jimbo needs to just keep last year's trophy.

A marathon is no joke.  Some days are better then others and a marathon does seem fairly easy.  But we all have bad days and we NEVER know when one will come along.  Hey . . . it's a frickin' marathon!  In Greece a guy died running one!  (And a guy in Rocky Mount almost did today!)

Don't get cocky.  God knows I have no reason to EVER get cocky when it comes to running . . .  I'm usually DFL or darn close.  But I did get cocky and didn't respect 26.2 miles.

But today, the Marathon Gods put me in my place.

I don't even want to think about the Umstead 100 . . .



  1. do that three more times and you have a sub 26 Umstead. Seriously. Rest up and go onto the race feeling fresh and raring to go. then on race day take it easy for the 1st 7 laps then kick it in. Tada !Belt buckle.
    tip one. don;t worry about the pace.
    tip two. don;t linger in the aid stations.
    tip 3 . Walk like you have to get somewhere in a hurry

  2. Frank -- What Joey said! Last year, I won the Rocky Mount Marathon (you came second after my heroic sprint over the last 0.2) - the time was well over 6 hours. Finished Umstead in under 28.

    What you did today was a great "time-on-feet-LSD" training run. A 6 hour run is better than a 5 hour run when it cones to hundreds - regardless of the distance covered.

    I will be there to take pictured of you getting your buckle.

  3. Training runs are supose to be tough. What you did yesterday was much better than running 20 miles and feeling good at the end. This is good. Training should always help us to respect the distance. Now your mind is in the right place. Umstead is going to come and go, but you are going to be on the finish end of that one. Yea, you will feel bad, you will hurt and the last third you will say you will never run 100 miles again, but after you finish and are able to reflect on what you just did you will say maybe and then that will drift into yes to running it again. You are on top of your game right now Frank. Joey has some good thoughts there and that is something you need to think about when you are out there.

  4. I'm with you Frank. 100 miles in a day is insane no matter what these guys say.

    On the other hand, you could look at it this way:
    Spending a nice day and night in the park, moving from one buffet table to another with a bunch of friendly lunatics. Could be fun.

  5. Frank, I like Anthony's idea. You are taking a nice long tour of buffet tables in the park. You get a sampling from each, see how they change, what new things appear. Go ahead and the rate displays...

  6. Fame and glory come after a fall! Yours is April 3rd!


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Littleton, North Carolina
World's Slowest Runner . . . well, at least in contention for the honor. Just your average "below average" runner.