Monday, January 17, 2011

The Cramps and Traditions

One of the signs that the spring semester starting is that I'm also starting with the SDTC's Rockin' and Runnin' Training program. This will be my fourth year running with the group. I'm pretty excited about it because I feel like I'm starting the season in better shape than I've ever been.

The first "real" long run starts at Hospitality Point and heads toward Crown Point and back. I don't know how many are registered with the program this year, and I'm not really very good at estimating crowd numbers, but I'd guess there were at least a few hundred runners at Hospitality Point at 7am. It's really quite the scene.  

Runners are grouped according to pace time and are given group names after different rock bands (get it, 
Rockin' and Running - training for the Rock and Roll marathon...ha ha ha). Anyway, the "A group (several of whom are headed to Boston in April) run 7 min/mile pace or faster are called "Tears for Fears." The B Group (7:30 to 9:00 min/mile) is called KISS, and the C group, of which I am a part (9:30 min/mile or slower) is called...


Yeah, I know. It's a little insulting, but I don't mind. I'm a proud C group member...and it certainly does give us the opportunity to make snarky comments... For example, at Tuesday night's track workout, Coach Paul was reminding everyone to "not go out too fast on a speed drill or..." and then he paused dramatically, which gave Betty and I the opportunity to say "you'll get CRAMPS," which definitely entertained those near us...I suspect this will become our mantra this season.

Anyway, the little out and back run was lovely. THE CRAMPS were supposed to run for 40 minutes, but I can't see driving out to the beach for only a 40 minute run at this point, so Walter and I decided to run for at least 50 minutes, or 5 miles....which brings me to the first big news of the season. Walter decided to join the club again! BWAHAHAHAHAHAHA. I have yet to question him on his thoughts about being a CRAMP.

(I'd include an embedded map here...but the Garmin Connect website is down for maintenance no map today...sigh...I can, however, include my time and stats from Daily Mile - 5 miles, 51 minutes, 10:13 pace)

The other big news of the morning is that BBJ decided to be one of THE CRAMPS this year. After three years of running with the B group, he's decided to just take it easy with us back of the packers. I have no doubt he'll have more fun. All I know is that running with Walter and BBJ will either make me faster, or it'll kill me. 
Day 1 - Four years ago (Alberta, Betty, Clarence, Edith, BBJ and was rather chilly that morning!). I have no idea where Elsie and Mik were...
Day 1 - Saturday - Mik, Elsie, BBJ, and I have done this four years now, Kat is in her third year, and Walter...he's our newbie). Betty was in Tahoe this weekend.

We took off with the first sub-group of the C group pack and I listened to Walter and BBJ talk about Aztec Basketball for awhile. When some of the C group turned around (they were running for 40 minutes), we continued for another 10, but we weren't alone. There were a fair number of C group runners who, for whatever reason, had decided to run for more than 40 minutes....

So here's where I almost lost my life and got taken out (and I don't mean on a date) by a B group runner who wasn't watching where he was going...

Whenever we run an out and back route, you almost always, eventually, cross paths with faster runners. Either they are headed back as you are still headed out OR they are passing you from behind. In other words, you need to be aware of who else is running around you AND you have to share the road.

I know, I know... Imagine having to share.

In any event, as I was running over a particularly narrow part of the route, I could see a group of B group runners coming toward me...running pretty much 3-4 abreast on the sidewalk. In other words, taking up the whole friggen' I moved as much to the right as I could...running on the curb, feeling like a gymnast running on a balance beam. I figured the 40-something, 200+lb, 6foot+ LARGE guy coming toward me would see me and either move in FRONT of, or BEHIND the 20-something, female he was trying to impress...

But, as he got close and closer (20 feet away, 15 feet, 10 feet...), I could see that he was NOT looking forward. When he was about 5 feet away from me, I yelled out "HEY...IN FRONT" and I stuck my hands out in front of me, mostly to see if I could maneuver my way around him and keep my balance as I stepped off the curb and into the street (THANK GOD there's a bike path there...and there wasn't a cyclist in it!).

To say the least, he was startled and pretty quickly apologetic, but he still shoulda been watching where he was going and not the pretty girls...

In any event, I probably knocked the air out of him since my extended hands probably hit him in the gut. I'm sure, after that, he looked decidedly uncool to the 20-somethings.

The rest of the run was relatively uneventful (I would HOPE so)...and afterward, we continued the tradition of mimosas at World Famous. (Rest assured Irene...we have PLENTY of breakfasts in front of us!)

Post run crew - Kat, Mik, Elsie and Walter
We have been having some unbelievable January weather here this weekend!
Hope you all have a grand week...I'm going back to work tomorrow. It's been a great winter break for me and I admit to being pretty sloth like this weekend (a little tummy flu I think), but it's back to the grind tomorrow. I'll keep you all posted!


  1. Wasn't Walter blocking for you when those runners came back at you or did you drop him like a bad habit since you are so much better shape at the start of this year?

    From a 40-something, 200+lb, 6foot+ LARGE guy but not that one.

  2. What I wouldn't give for one of those WAFFLES.

    LOL at your groups name!!!! I need to find me a good running group.

  3. That is too funny how the pace groups are named! Ha ha. I wish I was fast enough for the Cramps!

  4. Your weather. YOUR WEATHER! MAN OH MAN. Jealous, moi? And that breakfast looks VERY tasty too... And the runs sound fun!

  5. Used to be the fall Tuesday track groups helped pick the RnR group names. If that's still the case, I wonder what the workout was when everyone decided on The Cramps. It's definitely catchy.

    And I don't know if you were with the group when my friend Vicki was taken out by a cyclist near HoPo, but it appears the "no more than 2 abreast" lessons' been lost there.

  6. Saturday's weather certainly made up for the craptastic weather we had all summer. It was gorgeous!

    They should have a C+ group, for C groupers with experience, but I'm sure it would be a logistical nightmare. :) I ran over an hour. The weird part was being lapped by the A group.

    Yes, there WILL be plenty more breakfasts! I'm looking forward to it!

  7. Hey us 40-something, 200+lb, 6foot+ LARGE guys have to look at something, otherwise we'd never get out there!

  8. whenever I see folks running abreast like that, I just shake my head...doesn't make any sense at all..per Kovas' comment - maybe that's why he wasn't paying attention. Dude needs to

  9. It's always fun to be able to mark the race year with traditional races! Have fun with tyour training group!

  10. After the pics of the waffles and mimosas, I forgot what you wrote about!

  11. I'm so excited for you and the training start! I LOVE living in SD and I get so excited every year when the SD R and Roll training's become a tradition! It looks like you and the CRAMPS are going to have a blast once again. Waffle Party post run is the very best...oh, and the mimosas!
    I hope your jump back into work has gone well this week and that your tummy is better!
    Happy almost Thursday!

  12. Betty says,

    The Cramps name sucks!

  13. Couldn't go with the Coolcats or Cougar Towners or something? But "Cramps" has a certain runner charm to it...

  14. I hate when groups of runners block the entire path. So I'm not so sorry you body-checked that road-hogging runner. Maybe you should take up hockey? :-)

  15. I was shocked when you said "hundreds" of people were down there. Wow. The Cramps, could be worse. Didn't you or Irene say that one year the C team was called Air Supply? That would be bad. Maybe I'll do SD RnR.