The long awaited blog is finally here! Feel free to pinch yourself to make sure this isn’t a dream. Ok, ready?
Last weekend I was lucky enough to be taken along with my running club to Crikvenica, Croatia to participate in a coastal half marathon. The ‘travel team’ of my running club turned out to be me, an eighteen-year-old-man-child and eight wonderful women with children. Kelton and Mom Squad would be the title of our groundbreaking Serbian-English running based punk rock album. Here is the album cover.
Here we are having the traditional pre-run beer and cigarette. For all concerned parties I want to emphasize that I didn’t have either and I opted for the more appropriate green tea. Here are some more fun pictures my body deteriorating over the course of these 13 and a half miles.
The race kicked off from the city center on the ocean with a bang. Kelton and the mom squad had agreed to keep it slow and stick together. After the first 100 meters we were already in the very back of the pack. This was a bit of a tortoise and the hare strategy however we weren’t racing easily distractible and over-confident hares. They were all laser-focused hares. This meant we did not launch an awe inspiring comeback. However we held a steady pace the entire time and finished well behind the peloton as one would expect.
As someone who had never run anything more than a 5k race before I wasn’t really sure what I was getting myself into. I figured the worst case scenario is I’ll get tired and have to stop. That is an immense oversimplification of the sport of running but the mentality helped. It is important to note that I woke up the morning before the race feeling pretty sick. But I didn’t want to have driven five hours to not run the gosh darn race so much like Micheal Jordan in game 5 of the 1997 finals, I powered through my flu like symptoms. However I was considerably less heroic, accomplished or athletic as Jordan himself.
My rule was to just continue to run. I kept to this with one exception. Being my first long race I was paranoid I would dramatically collapse halfway from dehydration. So before the race I absolutely POUNDED the water. The first five kilometers went swimmingly until my saturated bladder caught up with me and I had to make an emergency trip to the men’s room. I had a hard time conveying my situation to the mom squad because from what I gathered, potty breaks were frowned upon. So as we jogged past a seaside cafe, I sprinted in and gave the owner the universal sorry bro I’m not able to buy anything because I’m in the middle in the race but I gotta wiz like a racehorse. He quickly understand and he gestured to the bathroom with an understanding look. With the speed and efficiency of a NASCAR pitstop I changed my oil and sped back out to catch up with the mom squad.
The kilometers droned by as we crawled along towards the finish line. When we finally tottered down the final stretch we collapsed into hearty bowls of soup included with the race. Greedily slurping down my baked beans I felt a wonderful sense of accomplishment and also a growing sickly sensation in the nether region. After a quick shower and an explosive BM, we hit the road back to Banja Luka. The following week I split my time evenly from wallowing in soreness in my bed or wallowing in disgust on the commode. The marathon depleted me in such a way that it took an entire week to fully recover. “Was all this really worth it Kelton?” you may ask. A great question! The answer is a cautious yes.
Here are some pictures of Crikvenica to assist with the mental image.
I would like to formally apologize for two great transgressions. Firstly, the incredible tardiness of this blog. I hope to remedy this by churning out some more quality content in the next couple of weeks. Secondly, talking so much about my poops. There is nothing to be done about it at this time but I can tentatively promise it won’t be brought up in my next blog.