Cake or pie?

Friday, January 29, 2010

Running Tip #2

Before I ran my first marathon, the Marine Corps Marathon in 2007, I was a spectator at the MCM in 2002 or 2003 I think. I was a student athlete at my university at the time, and as a team we went to the course to cheer on the runners and offer whatever encouragement that we could. One teammate in particular was pretty hilarious with some of her encouragement, like "You're almost there!"

Bear in mind, we were at mile marker 20 of a 26.2 mile race. They were not "almost there." Marathoners joke that a marathon is just a 20 mile race followed by one of the hardest 10K's of your life. Ultramarathoners joke that a marathon's just a warm-up. I guess there's always someone higher on the pecking order, (and in medicine too, sweet!) huh? Spectators tell runners lies all the time, and rarely the truth.

Sample lies:
  • Lookin' good!
  • You're almost there! (this looks familiar huh?)
  • The beer's close!!
  • This is the last hill, c'mon you can do it!
Sample truth:
  • If it were easier, I'd be doing it!
You get the gist of it.

Anyway, my tip is: use BodyGlide or some other kind of lubricant. If you have never run longer than 2-3 miles, lubrication usually doesn't come up. It can be a lifesaver to use it though, especially on long(er) runs. If I am doing less than 10 miles, I just put it on my feet so I don't get blisters, even though I missed a spot at this past year's MCM in 2009 and got a sweet blister as a result. If I am doing more than 10 miles, my nipples get the BodyGlide treatment. You know why one of the lies quoted above is "Lookin' good!" ? I can tell you, if you are bleeding from chafed nipples, which BTW has never happened to me but I saw at that MCM back in 2002 or 2003, you are most definitely NOT looking good. The guy that dropped a deuce in his shorts was also not lookin' good back then, but at least we didn't know it until he ran past us. Talk about dedication. I know at the MCM over the years several different groups have been around offering up vasoline on tongue depressors (aka popsicle sticks?), for all your anti-chafe needs.

I wish I had known about BodyGlide when I taught camps for several summers in 80-100 degree weather throughout the Northeastern United States (Virginia to Pennsylvania with some NC & SC thrown in). Some of the dudes I worked with always swore by Gold Bond, or Gold Bond Medicated (saying Medicated was like a cooool breeze~! on your junk). BG washes off, it's awesome. They have my full endorsement.

So running tip #2: lubricate, especially on longer runs. Especially especially if you're overweight, or your thighs rub together. Anywhere there is going to be skin-on-skin or skin-on-sock-on-shoe upper, it's a great idea to use BodyGlide or your other favorite lubricant (wonder how KY Jelly works.. just kidding).

Austin Marathon blog post will be up sometime this weekend.

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