On Sunday I decided, for no particular reason, to run a half marathon. Not one of those boring organised ones with their water points every 3km and their camaraderie and their beautiful delicious ice cold cups of Coke at the finish and their shiny medals and their…NO.
Not one of those.
I just stepped out into the street, pointed myself in the general direction of the lumpy-arsed end of Table Mountain and started running.
At some point during the one hour and fifty seven minutes I was on the road (yes, it’s a crap time) my mind started wandering. I’ve discovered over the years that this is my secret weapon. Basically, if I can get my brain to start thinking about all kinds of random shit then I stop worrying about being tired, in pain, unfit etc. A familiar wandering path for my brain is to start thinking up ways to combine writing and running. My most recent great-idea-when-running-turns-out-to-be-a-bit-shit-afterwards thought was 1000km 100 beers. Plan was to run 20km every weekend and taste two local beers (with two weeks off because 1040km 104 beers just sounds rubbish).
There are many such as these in the ideas graveyard.
And so, in honour of all the crap that bounces around in my head to stop me thinking about my knees and hips, here is an A to Z that popped into my head during this weekend’s jog.
A. Audioslave. Should have put it on my playlist. That Cochese track is great for running, although in fairness it’s not up there with No One Knows by Queens Of The Stone Age…wait forget about that I’ll need that line if I ever get to Q.
B. Banana. I probably should have had one before I left. Maybe that fruit stall at the top of Constantia Nek will have some…no money…could always steal one and then do a runner…ha! do a runner…that’s well funny…oops…pothole…
C. Cyclists. Haven’t seen one today. There is a God.
D. Downhill. I’ve been going uphill for seven kays, coming back will be much easier surely?
E. Extra-Terrestrial. What if I got kidnapped by aliens? Would make a great book, well, once I could sit down again and stuff.
F. Fartlek. Thank you Sweden.
G. Goals. I need to enter a proper race with water tables and shiny medals. That sub 1.40 half is on the cards if I step up my training by about a million percent. Wait…is it even possible to have a million percent?
H. Heart Rate Monitor. I need to get that thing calibrated. I swear it would claim my day-dead corpse had a heart rate of 158.
I. Spy With My Little Eye Something Beginning With…
J. Jogger! Will I get a smile…will I get a smile…will I get a…THERE YOU GO! GET IN THERE! In your face non-greeting-face-as-long-as-your-lycra-cycling-folk.
K. Ketchup. Mmmm..burgerrrsssss…
L. Love. I love my wife. I love my kids. I love being on my own. I love lamp.
M. Mountain. It really is very pretty out here. And steep. Very, very steep.
N. Negative Thinking. Maybe I should just turn around at Southern Cross Drive, no one’s going to know. It’s been a really good effort and I haven’t been out much lately, will probably be better to take it a bit easier in the long run and…JUST SUCK IT UP AND KEEP GOING. AND STOP SAYING IT OUT LOUD, YOU’RE GETTING WEIRD LOOKS.
O. Outdoors. It really is pretty out here. And steep. Very, very steep.
P. Procrastirunning. Maybe I’m only running to avoid writing…quick…think up some half baked story ideas that you can discard later.
Q. Quantum Physics. Who are you trying to kid. We’re back to QOTSA…dumduhduduhdumduduhduduh.
R. Rhys. I hope he’s feeling better. Poor kid. Not nice throwing up the whole weekend when you’re too young for beer to have caused it. What kind of parent am I? I should be at home rubbing his forehead with a wet towel and…I’m even worse than I thought! Arwen didn’t get a look in when I was doing A…I wonder if she’d like Audioslave…
S. Sex. Let me suspend inner-voice-monologue here to give you some facts. Men think about sex all the time. Except when we’re running. Then we overlap areas of the space time continuum to think about it all the time and a little bit more. It’s not just me. It’s not! Ok fine it probably is.
T. Terminal Illness. I wonder if I’ve got something bad and have no idea and all this running is futile. I’m out running, wasting the final two hours of my life when I could be having beautiful wondrous sex…sexy sex McSex…
U. Uphill. Wasn’t this part uphill in the other direction as well? How is this possible?
V. Virtually Home. 5 kays to go…that’s like 3 miles…yay for old school measurements three is way less than five…how long is a furlong again?
W. Why? *insert universal, unanswerable question here*
X. X-Rays. I wonder if I’ve still got all those x-rays of my lungs for the TB checks for home affairs…I’m sure I could turn them into a coffee table or a mural or something.
Y. WHY? *repeat universal, unanswerable question in louder voice here*
Z. Zany. That’s an awful thing to be called. I never want to be called Zany. Or even Zane.