24 January 2008

Fingers, Running

Back in my younger days I had occasion to listen to country music. It didn't happen often but there was one song I always liked. Do you remember the song Daddy's Hands? Well, I would often look at my Dad's hands as I grew up. He was a carpenter and did amazing things. But in the winter when he would come home from work his fingers were yellow-white from being so cold. It scared me to see his hands like that but he always reassured me that they were fine.

I know now that he had frostbite most of the time. Tonight after coming out of the movie, which I'll talk about in a moment, I drove home (wearing gloves, mind you) and when I headed to my apartment I took off my glove and my middle and ring fingers on my right hand were that same yellow-white. They felt like ice. it sucked. But I guess instead of having Daddy's Hands I have Father's Fingers. Hahaha.

Okay...so the important thing here: tonight I went to see Spirit of the Marathon. It was a one time showing at a theatre here in town (which surprised me since we usually never get cool stuff like this). Anyway, I went by myself and sat alone in the top row watching all the runners walk in through the door and take their seats.

First, it was pretty surreal since maybe 3 people in the theatre had popcorn, maybe another 5-10 had drinks. Everyone else was fine. One guy said, "I bet they don't sell many snacks at this event tonight." Very true. I didn't even drink my entire soda.

The other oddity was how loud it was before the movie. I've vented about movie experiences before with the chewing noises and chomping and blah blah...but this was loud in that everyone was talking to each other about previous races, upcoming races, current training, hi how are you, wanna run tomorrow, are you excited for this...yada, yada, yada.

I felt very out of place. These were true runners who all knew each other. These were the hard core people I see out on the streets even now when it's -27 wind chill on a weekday morning or running in shorts when it's 20 degrees out. This isn't me. I'm not a runner. I'm a jogger and I wondered if I really belonged here.

Then a group showed up with a lot of people and I graciously gave up my prize seat (direct, middle, back/upper row) so they could all sit together and I ended up sitting next to...(figures)...a Boston Qualifier.

Shit. Fcuk. I don't belong here. She was polite and asked if I was a runner and I said I'm new to the sport and ran my first marathon last year but didn't finish well so I need to run it again. She asked which one (of course) and when I said TC she understood. She did help ease my tension by telling me that most everyone she has talked to finished about 50 minutes or so slower than their normal pace. And that would be about accurate for what my goal and plan was, and I think same for E and JB. So that was nice. Of course then she started talking to her friend and revealed she was a qualifier. I felt very fat and sluggish at that moment.

But the movie...OMG the movie - if you've never ran or if you've ran thousands of races, this is such an inspiring movie. It was so great to follow elite runners as well as novices as they prepped for Chicago. Deena Kastor won that year (I think this was 2006) and following her story was amazing. If only I had that kind of time (and a massage therapist as a husband) to help me through. I could kick ass at any race. One favorite moment at the end a tag line came up and said that in the time it took to watch the movie the elite runners would be at mile 20 in a marathon. Great...

So now I'm realizing I really need to get going for Brookings. That's coming up way too soon but this was good for me to see to get me motivated. I figure I'll go to this in March to keep me motivated.

And thank God for my iPod shuffle since it's looking like I won't have a running buddy this year with deployments and schedules and God knows what else. So I'm completely on my own. But isn't that really what happens in a race [life] anyway? Might as well train for it.


jb said...

even if we're not there WITH you, we're there in spirit. and ps ... i hate to break the news to you, but you're a runner. sorry.

Anonymous said...

What's this about a movie that's only shown ONE night? Looks like they're already planning an encore for a Thursday night in Feb, so maybe I'll try to catch that.

Thanks for the heads up, and glad you enjoyed the film. If you felt out of place, then I don't know how "barely surviving 5k" me is going to feel, but who knows, maybe...

Ecky said...

I always admire runners, because they have a very fit body.

If only my city is a proper place to do outdoor run, I prolly would love to do it, I always easily get bored jog in treadmill