Scene 1- Enter myself. Lacing up my shoes, tired and dishevelled. Still trying to wind it up after a laid back Christmas. The skies are heavy with rain and I'm somewhere between 'not giving a rat's ass' and 'I better do a bit' with two week's to my first race.
- Enter the coach. Lacing up his shoes, Motivated and eager, annoyingly so. They're not all like this. Just my one, that's how he does it. He used to cycle, now he run's. Just like me.
- Yawn's a "Hi"
- "Hey man, your a bit sluggish? not to worry, there's a long year there."
- "Ah ya, I'l be grand"
- "Pfffft, you'll be grand! what have you been at since October?"
- "I'v been tipping away, *u*k you very much, matter of fact I'm quite chuffed with myself, you got me on a bad day."
- "Ha, your getting old I suppose. You probably need to up your game a bit. You might get in some sort of shape for April and May if you start getting a bit specific now. The impending trip to the Dungarvan 10 for your annual hiding is just around the corner, good to see your in the right form to keep up the tradition."
Coach get's dirty look.
- "What tradition?"
I get a confused one back, confused because he can't figure out why I don't know what he's talking about.
- "Go out too fast, lock up with lactate and hang on for dear life for the last 8 miles only to end up coming in a minute slower than your last attempt"...............
-"nyyeah, well, I'll probably go out handy this time"
-"If you got yourself fit you could go out fast and and hold it to the finish"
-"Don't worry, there's a long year there, Either way, It'll (Dungarvan 10) clear out the cobweb's and get the race head in gear."
Conversation fade's to make way for one of the many hill's on the route. A few lap's on a local trail. The rain's coming down heavy from a thick bank of fog clinging to the top's of the surrounding trees and the stream that split's the loop down the middle is swollen and brown. If I came on my own I'd be in heaven, but I'v got to entertain this guy. Glad to say we're on a par as I start to find my feet.
-"I can go uphill just like you"
- panting "that's promising, but I'm no mountain goat"
-"not today anyway"
-"If you've got it don't be afraid to test me"
-"Your grand, I'm enjoying this pace, today is all about the intrinsic benefit's of getting out for a run and all the benefit's that go with it. Ya know, endorphin's an all that"
-"WTF, is that really you I'm listening to? a f***in philosopher now. You must have been out last night or else your getting soft."
Conversation's die and we get comfortable in the silence. A heightened awareness of our surround's put's the small talk to bed. It's irrelevant. The rain get's heavier, the tree's get greener, eleven miles done, I could stay out here all day like this but there's stuff to be done. The deep green's and brown's make way for the drab grey's of tarmac, concrete and raincloud's on the last two mile's into town.
Whatever happen's in the meantime , come Sunday we'll get up and do it again.