Sunday, 15 April 2012

#61: Crying, Waiting, Hoping

Not much to report these days so this will be short and almost entirely running related.

First of all, a HUGE congratulations to our 4 Canadian runners in Rotterdam today who absolutely destroyed the distance. Dylan Wykes finished 7th overall and smashed the Olympic Standard of 2:11:29 by posting an amazing time of 2:10:47, which is also the second fastest marathon time by a Canadian EVER!!! Rob Watson of the hugely popular 'LeBlogDuRob' went balls to the wall and hit a 3min PB but narrowly missed the standard posting a gutsy 2:13:35. Cookies and beer are still certainly in order. And last but certainly not least, the two females also fell just short of the woman's standard (2:29:55) by notched incredible PBs led by Lanni Marchant in 2:31:51 and Krista DuChene in 2:32:05. Amazing races by our Canadian elite distance runners. Looking forward to seeing 3 guys (Wykes, Coolsaet and Gillis) in London this summer and the females continue to make gains for our country and our sport. Incredible!

From left: Dylan Wykes, Reid Coolsaet and Eric Gillis. The top 3 Canadian marathoners and  heading to London 2012.
And then there's us mere mortals! There are but 3 weeks to go to Goodlife and it's now officially taper time. Today we did our penultimate long run of 32k which topped off a 140+km week that also included the toughest workout of the season on Wed. The next three weeks will see decreased but still substantially high mileage of  approximately 125, 125 and 120k leading up to and including the marathon on 06 May. As Davey pointed out this morning: "The hay is in the barn...we just have to shut the door!" Cheers to that! Next Sunday I and many others in the cub will also compete in the team challenge at the Yonge St. 10k and will get to see how we stand up to the group standard which Darren set today with an impressive Sun Run performance of 34:33. With a hugely favourable downhill course at Yonge St., a 34 low or 33 high should just be within reach and the team challenge could be ours.

And finally, just in time for the marathon, I'm re-reading 'Again to Carthage' the sequel to the highly acclaimed 'Once a Runner' both by John L. Parker Jr. Earlier today, I just happened to be reading Chapter 27, coincidentally titled 'Correspondence,' and was moved by a number of paragraphs that I'd like to share here. I am convinced that these words say more about the reasons I run than any others...

“…when you’re a competitive runner in training you are constantly in a process of ascending… It’s not something most human beings would give a moment of consideration to, that it is actually possible to be living for years in a state of constant betterment. To consider that you are better today than you were yesterday or a year ago, and that you will be better still tomorrow or next week or at tournament time your senior year. That if you’re doing it right you are an organism constantly evolving toward some agreed-upon approximation of excellence.”

"... it was something we lived every second of our lives. It was such a part of us that if we had ever given it any thought, it would have been a mental lapse, a sign of weakness. Of course I am getting better every day, I would have said, what the hell am I training for otherwise? As if there were only one alternative, as if the arrow of improvement necessarily parallels the arrow of time, and in only one direction."

", lose or draw, just being involved in such an undertaking was itself ennobling. It was an uplifting experience that we all intuitively understood to be such, and I now know that almost incidentally the spiritual force of our effort created a slipstream that drew all else in our lives along with it and made us better in other ways as well."

So with that in mind... Keep running everyone.

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