The glamorous life of runners and athletes told in a few anecdotal tales.
I always marvel at the runners who look as though the just stepped out of the salon as they cross the finish line. When I finish a race I am a sweaty mess and look completely disheveled, I sometimes even have energy gel on my face . . . does this happen to you? I usually share the positive aspects of racing but now I’ll share a few of the unspoken true stories about the non glamorous side of running that have had me and my friends and hopefully you too in stitches. It is actually many of these silly, goofy, giggle inducing moments that make me love the sport of running (and any athletic competition for that matter) even more because while running can be serious when you are racing it can also be a source of great entertainment too!
*Disclaimer-all names and some details have been removed to protect the identities of the athletes in these stories.
Picture it. You are transitioning from the bike to the run in your first triathlon. So far everything has been going smoothly. You change your shoes and grab a granola bar as you head out onto the 10K course. What you don’t realize as you pop this tasty treat into your mouth is that this is no ordinary granola bar. You have chosen poorly out of your stash at home and grabbed the one containing Chili Peppers. Yes, that’s right, mouth and throat burning chili peppers. You chew for a few seconds and then realize your mistake as you begin to cough and wheeze and inhale more of the spicy mouth burning bar. You are coughing and trying to get air. Finally you reach the first mile marker and quickly grab as many cups of water and gatorade as you can to wash away the spice. Thankfully the heat in your mouth subsides and you are able to regain your strides.
This next story is an oldie but goodie from my days as a rower. Caution do not read any further if you are easily grossed out. The Scene: spring break for the crew team in Virginia. Rowing practice has ended for the day. Your teammate finds two novice rowers down by the boathouse “washing” their hands in a spicket. He wonders out loud, “what are you washing with?” “The soap! from the sink in the Porta-Potty” they exclaim in unison . . . “Ummmmm, that is NOT soap!” he says and that was NOT a sink!” . . . that is all I will tell you about this one but if you have spent any time racing you will know exactly what the girls had found to wash their hands with. ICK! I tell this story every Reach the Beach Relay. You will never look at a Porta Potty the same way again!
You race 24 or so glorious miles of trail. Along the way you consume your favorite energy gel which is made from figs. Have you ever seen the color of figs? Well, the color is brown. So fast forward. You cross the finish line and are stoked to be finished. You wander around for about a half hour after the race talking to other runners with your good friend. You are unsuspecting of the odd looks everyone is giving you. Finally you go into the bathroom to freshen up. You look in the mirror and notice a giant brown glob of energy gel on your face. Your friend has failed to tell you about this . . . all you can do is laugh about it!
You are waiting in line for the race and come to find out that a fellow trail racer was a bit worried about the run, “Why?” you ask with curiousity. The runner discloses with a look of embarrassment, “Well, two weeks ago I was out for a trail run with a friend and I really had to go . . . to make a long story short I made a mistake. I should have thought about the rhyme. Leaves of three let it be if you know what I mean . . . OUCH! Thankfully she was able to laugh about it. Let this be a cautionary tale!
You were out for the perfect morning trail run with your running group. It was chilly so at the end of your run you proceed to change your clothes after the run so that you can stay warm during breakfast and your morning errands. Little do you know you failed to properly remove one of your items of clothing. At lunchtime you return home. Your husband takes one look at you and cracks up. You look in the mirror. You are wearing your sports bra danlging around your neck like a necklace and have been for the whole morning!
Now these are just a selection of run funnies from my unglamorous life of racing and training. I hope I didn’t gross you out too much and at least put a smile on your face! I’d love to hear your tales from the glamorous sport of running or any other sport for that matter.
Happy trails and look out for those leaves of three and beware of those leaves of three! Get out there and get running!
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