Sunday, September 9, 2018

Winnipeg 10 & 10, 2018

Full disclosure... I didn't bandit the course but I came close several times. I prefer to consider myself an on-course pacer dude with attitude or, if that doesn't work for you, a volunteer course clown. I did exit the course at aid stations but truthfully I indulged in a couple shots of gator aid from a sympathetic volunteer, and the police waved me through at Broadway even when I mouthed 'no'. My apologies to Race Director Chris Walton for the semi banditing. For my penance I will sponsor a child runner at next week's Point Douglas Run.
I've been in a runners' frump due to an injury which is on the mend, slowly.  I did not register for the 10 & 10 because I've just come off 6 weeks of vacation in Newfoundland where (another disclosure) I indulged heavily in local cuisine and drink (about 8 pounds worth of fun and abandon according to the dastardly bathroom scale).

Ahh Newfoundland, paradise on Earth.  I did manage a couple of extraordinary costal runs which I will blog in the coming weeks.

The 10 & 10 revived my spirit. I ran the course backwards and off to the side. I felt like a runner today for the first time in several months.  I felt the strength returning to my legs, my heart pumping in perfect synchronization with my lungs, the coolness of the wind and the soft rain on my face.

I am reminded of health and good vibrations. My people, my community, all smiling on the outside while grimacing on the inside.  The cheers of 'hey Mike' melt my heart and move me forward despite the niggling pain just below the surface.  I encourage all. I tell them it's a good day, a good day to be alive and watch them glow with sheer determination.

I grooved and moved down Wellington.  I danced a cheerful beat along Sherbrook.  I am all that I can be.... I run happily and smile broadly.

I am the course clown in my enthusiasm.

I love watching MRA Hall of  Fame Inductee, Alice Sherwin in the last few miles of any race. Her face aglow with focus and biting determination. This young teacher is an inspiration to her students and her community. She makes Winnipeg proud.

Dr. Chris Frank knows only one speed, bullet fast, and then he runs home after capturing a 62 minute 10 miler. I can't describe his face while he runs... it's a beautiful sight to behold, all sweaty, all focussed, all fighting.  He is what I dreamed I could become.

Young Jonas found his legs a mere three years ago, and look at him now, screaming, no screeching fast, and so focussed.  I had the brief pleasure of running along side his lithe frame. He slowed and politely chatted with this old guy.  I said "I've lost my speed Jonas, you go boy" and that he did, like a Nausa rocket, he exploded into overdrive and left me puzzled, puzzled in amazement at the potential of the human body. 

You go Jonas!

Don't stop.


I have lost my speed.

I am proud of my community. I am proud of all who take the initiative to lace up, to show up, to make a commitment to positive well being.

It is, and don't take my word, ask any runner, a good day to be alive.


...and I think of Jo....