So, I got out of the pool yesterday after drinking my share of pee water and started coughing. Thought it was the chlorine (or the piss or the hairballs or the e-coli), but as the day progressed so did my cough. Last night Sam asked what the heck was wrong with my voice. I told him I had taken up smoking copious amounts of pot. And cigarettes. It helps with my training. And, my glaucoma.
I’m not sick SICK, so when my alarm went off today at 5am for my riding group it never occurred to me to not go. I mean, training under adverse conditions is what it’s all about, right? Makes us stronger or something like that?
There is actually a pro triathlete (well, he won the Ironman World Championship in 2010), Chris McCormack, who, in an effort to learn how to deal with GI distress during race, eats nachos with super spicy hot sauce before long runs. Yes, the dude deliberately instigates cramps and farts and the need to evacuate. In his own words (I find this fascinating!):
“I always had this problem of my stomach shutting down during the marathon of an Ironman. So I thought if I could run with my stomach shutting down, I could do it in a race. So once a week I would sit down and eat nachos with really spicy hot sauce. Then I’d get my running gear on, go for a run and of course, my stomach would shut down, but I’d just keep going.”
I don't see any shit in this picture.
“They were brutal training runs. But then on race day, when my stomach would shut down I’d think, “I can deal with this.” I’d be able to keep going. Doing this paid off so many times over. I’d do this 10 weeks out from Ironman until two weeks before race day. It’d be a horrible run, but it had a huge impact on my overall race performance.”
He is hard core. But, what he doesn’t tell us is about shitting on the side of the road, what TP he used, etc. (Thanks, Jason, for putting this on your blog).
I, on the other hand, do not need to eat nachos before a run because my body already knows how to cramp and shit itself without any hand holding. It is a built in training strategy. I could win an Ironman.
Anyway, the ride was amazingly beautiful, but I have to admit I felt like dog crap. Probably smelled like it too. I think it’s funny when you start getting sick. At first you say, “Oh, it’s probably allergies” or “Oh, I have something in my throat.” You deny the sickness for as long as possible. But then there comes a point of acceptance. I can’t deny any more that I’ve got some respiratory crap.
But, when you're with a group, there is no wussing out or turning back early, so I sucked it up. Shut up and do not be a pussy.
We headed towards the foothills, then up Lefthand Canyon.
As we passed the spot where Eugene Howrey, age 73, was killed on his bike on Friday, I took a moment to think of him and to send healing thoughts to his family. Here’s a guy well into his 70s just trying to stay healthy and to live an active life. To make matters worse, come to find out that the trucker who hit him was charged with reckless driving two years ago for nudging a cyclist into oncoming traffic. I know he didn’t do it on purpose, but he probably was being more aggressive or less cautious than he needed to be.
Anyway, 1,400 feet of climbing (from about 5,000 feet to 6,400 feet) in the first 14 miles kind of kicked my ass. But it was downhill the whole way back, so I lived. I can’t tell you how much I love this group. Not just because the women are strong and amazing, but because it pushes me to whole new levels.
I call this the “tit” ride. Thanks for pointing that out Matty!
But, now it’s time to take a load off.
Are you in denial when you get sick? Do you still train? I deny it for awhile. If there is no fever, I can breathe okay and I don’t feel too run down, I still train. But, maybe a bit lighter than I would otherwise.
Ever purposefully eat crap before running just to see what happens? No, I don’t. I once, by mistake and before I was really a runner, ate beef stroganoff for lunch before a run. I think I threw up.
Are you an early morning workout-er? I love getting up and getting it done. Plus, morning is my favorite time of day. So full of possibility.