Monday, September 22, 2008

The Electric Gatorade Lactic Acid Test

With apologies to Tom Wolfe.

You can always tell when you pushed a bit too hard on a long run. The lactic acid builds up in the legs leaving you shuffling over the next few days as it works back out through the ever-whitening shades of your urine. Even the 5 and 10 mile mid week runs turn into a challenge.

This past week has been the Great Lactic Acid battle for this marathon training season. Every season has them. I pushed a bit too hard on last weekend’s 20 miler. Since I’m not running a half marathon or other distance race prior to the marathon, I decided the 20 miler could afford to go a little faster than I would normally treat one of those.

My normal Mr. Serious Runner Guy face has been replaced with a Mr. Contorted Grimace* for the last few runs. The look that says, ‘Yeah running is really, really fun. Honest’, to all the passing cars. The adults in the front seat give each other the knowing see-I-told-you-it isn’t-good-for-you look while the children in the backseat now have a fresh face to the beast prowling their closets after Lights Out.

Unlike the Tom Wolfe novel, this story isn’t loaded with Merry Pranksters but Merry Crampsters. After each run, my leg muscles were twitching faster than a tasered college students pectoral muscles after a post game, alcohol fueled, couch burning riot. I consoled them with lots of Gatorade and happy thoughts about being only a few days short of taper.

And as the final big long run approaches (21 miles this coming Sunday), the schedule is getting increasingly cluttered. Had I known the children would take so much time out of my day, I may have opted for pet ostriches. Here’s a recap of yesterday as an example:

8-11:30am Drive home from visiting grandparents.
11:30-12:00 Detox from grandparents visit (i.e. slowly resume amount of profanity in your conversational language)
12:30-2:15 Attend son’s soccer game in the next town over (away game)
2:15-2:35 Rush to car to drive dangerously fast with flying middle fingers to make it to daughter’s soccer game. Profanity spikes here.
2:45-4:00 Daughter’s soccer game.
4:00-4:10 Drive home.
4:15-5:55 Run 14 miles (somewhere in here look enviously at hobo and wonder how bad it would be to be a crack head)
5:56-6:10 Shower and pretty myself up. (Had to cut 1 mile off LR for this activity)
6:11-7:30 Drive puppy over and attend her training classes.
7:50 Arrive back home and begin getting kids ready and into bed.
7:51 Put "nighty night water" (i.e. bourbon) back in cupboard.
7:52-8:29 Look busy while Mrs.Nitmos graciously irons clothes for me and trudges heavy laundry up and down stairs.
8:30 - ?? Sob uncontrollably and consider becoming a crack head.

14.0 miles
1:38:07 time
7.01 pace

Life would be so much easier if I just bought myself an old school bus, painted it in rainbow strips, loaded up Mrs. Nitmos, the kids, dog and newly adopted ostriches and toured the country on an psychedelic rush of endorphins, Gu, Gatorade and (lactic) acid.

But, then again, I’d have to give up my HDTV. Pappa can’t have that.

Happy trails.

* I’m not sexist. I just don’t think my facial expressions are feminine or married. Otherwise, there’s no reason they couldn’t be Mrs. Contorted Grimace. You may certainly assign gender to your facial expressions at your pleasure.

Soccer Update:

Colt’s team is a regular league menace. Yesterday’s tally? 11-1. Son didn’t score but made Mrs. Nitmos and I proud with many terrific centering passes for goals as the left winger and much post goal preening. I believe I saw him bust out The Worm at one point before drawing a yellow card. He was also pretty pleased that this was the first game in awhile in which Daddy didn't verbally assault the ref and have to spend the rest of the game in the car.

Filly? Yes, she
earned a name. In fact, she earned a first, middle, and a few nicknames. Five goals in all. Really, she embarrassed the other team. As coach and ref, I was able to keep my mutterings of ‘oh, man, you just got served…again’ barely audible. The other team heard. But not their parents. That’s really the Lasting Lesson I’m trying to teach: When taunting, make sure you do it in a way that injures the psyche of your opponent but does not get you in trouble. I think they are starting to get it.


RazZDoodle said...

I had to re-read the puppy timeframe. I thought you said "drive over puppy". Whoops. That's probably not something you put on the schedule, huh?

Sarah said...

somewhere in here look enviously at hobo and wonder how bad it would be to be a crack head

Really really, bad. Very bad indeed, in fact. Welcome to the dark side of crackdom. WARNING: DEFINITELY NSFW, I REPEAT, NSFW (unless you have an obscured monitor or private office).

Don't let that-- either player in that drama-- be you! Just say no!

Good luck with this Last Week Before Taper. Only 3 weeks and six days left until Detroit!

Vava said...

Stay on course, Nitmos! That rainbow painted bus is sure to have more engine problems than it's worth, so HDTV or otherwise, stay on course. Crackhead? Hmmm... See if you can start a conversation once getting this guy to run with you; if he can make it more than ten feet it may be an option worth considering.

Anonymous said...

was puppy class only 10 min long? haha... that must be one well behaved dog. =)

Blyfinn said...

So when are you going to publish a book about coaching? I'd love to read about more tips on how to make my son's opponents get into the fetal position and suck their thumbs.

Marlene said...

Thank you for re-affirming my decision not to have kids just yet...I like my FREE TIME. (Yes, there is such a thing...)

*aron* said...

wow that is one busy weekend!!! congrats on both kids soccer games... FIVE goals! she is a rockstar :)

almost taper time!!!

Girl on Top said...

Haha, love the soccer update!

chia said...

Doode, congrats on having kids even more kick ass than yourself :-P

Last I checked you only had one nickname!

tfh said...

Maybe you need to figure out some way to coach your son's soccer team, too. That way you could remind all the kids they should be setting HIM up with the goals instead of letting him assist all the time. Besides, it looks like you have plenty of time to take on more responsibilities.

Roisin said...

That "nighty night water" bit is cracking me up. Maybe "cracking up" is the wrong phrase for you. I'll say that it was humorous, and leave it at that. Remember what Whitney said, crack is wack.

Anonymous said...

At least you're fast or you wouldn't have had time for 14 miles!

Big said...

one more long run and then...taper! You should teach your children to drive themselves, it would save you ton of time.

Chad said...

"Had I known the children would take so much time out of my day, I may have opted for pet ostriches."
No good - they get even more ornary. Woodcucks, maybe...

Anonymous said...

This blog's got it all - literary references, words of wisdom for the runner, and explicit strategies on injuring the psyches of small children. Keep up the good work!!!!!!

Scott said...

You're going to PR in your next marathon. Your training runs are impressive...

Reluctant Runner said...

Hey, Mr. Contorted Grimace: You're either on the bus, or you're off the bus. (To paraphase Tom Wolfe). You are definitely "on" the marathon bus ... best of luck with your upcoming run!

Michelle J said...

Impressive Nitmos!! I envy your timing for long runs!! You squeeze every last moment out of the day!!


Kristina said...

Did you hear about that kid they kicked out of little league because his pitches were too fast? That's gonna be your girl.
Way to go, filly.

nwgdc said...

Wow, that's a FAST recovery from time from the elderly. You are a classy and refined individual, aren't you Nitmos?!

Ovens2Betsy said...

I swear yesterday conspired against runners. I broke down in tears (check out my blog for the pic), and I heard from another runner that she too had a crappy run. Must be the last-day-of-summer blues.

Have fun with your taper!

Ms. V. said...

SORRY. I was temporarily distracted by Sarah's Crack is Whack blog.

What'd you say again? Sompthin' about kids getting in the way of running?

Love the profanity references.

Xenia said...

Congrats to your kids!

If you need some time, just lock them in a large dog crate for a while. Worked for me. Hey, wait a minute...

MizFit said...

no comments from me lately because Im completely bowled over by your ability to create this shit day in and day out.


and the NIT.

AddictedToEndorphins said...

i like the idea of rainbow colored buses. The whole world is happy and there are flowers instead of bullets and we all randomly break into song? :)

Killer run!

P.O.M. said...

Let's see how crazy you get when you taper. :) Fun stuff.
Will you pick people up on your bus? Will smoke billow out when you open the bus door, like on Scooby Doo?

Meg said...

Five goals? Wow. You didn't even mention that final score. Nice job!

jen said...

Busy busy! At least you got the run in. I bet the hobo was jealous of you. :)

sRod said...

Your kids are little powerhouses, aren't they?