Friday, January 13, 2012

The 12athon is Bonkers - January 12athon Run

Do as I say, not as I do. Don't run 21 miles on Saturday, followed by 5 miles of hard speed work on Tuesday, followed by 12 miles for the 12athon on Thursday. It won't work. Well, it might "work", but you will pay my friend.

I thought I could pull off a 12athon run without too much trouble. I thought I could mosey out to Umstead and run my favorite hilly trail at an easy-breezy, leisurely pace after the previous hard training sessions. As usual, I thought wrong.

I should have known this wasn't going to work when I woke up achy and tired that morning, but I'm too stubborn to listen to my own body (who's in charge here, anyway?!).

My body said "Do Not Run Today".

My brain said "Screw you meat! I'm in charge! We're running! Gray matter for the win!!!!"

My body responded "Sigh... Ever heard of learning from your past mistakes?"

My brain said "Ooooh, look! New posts on Facebook!"

So it was that lunchtime saw me in Umstead heading out for a 12+ mile run. It started poorly and got worse from there. My legs felt dead. My heartrate was too high, even at very slow paces. Nothing was working. But I endeavored to persevere. I'm in charge. Move it meat!

The first thing you pass on this route is
a graveyard. Foreshadowing anyone?

About 2 miles into the run, I realized I had worn one too many shirts. I decided to ditch a shirt by hiding it in some leaves. I would pick it up on my way back.

No one will ever find it here. And that
includes me...
Six miles in, the suffer-meter pegged at maximum suckitude. Hill after hill after hill was literally sucking the life out of my legs. I was walking - up and down hills. Lots of hills like this:

Even the warning cone couldn't stand upright on this hill.
And then, the cramps started! I can't tell you how much I hate cramps. I would rather be puking into the ditch than have my hamstrings attempting to strangle my femurs like demented boa constrictors. I was cramping so bad, the trees were cramping in sympathy.

My legs felt just like this...

When I ran the Umstead Marathon last year, I bonked hard in the hills around mile 17 or so. I know the exact spot where that bonk grabbed hold of my body, because I actually stopped and sat down on the stump of a tree. I look at that stump every time I run by it in order to remind myself why I run these hills.

The Umstead Memorial Bonk Stump

Guess where I ended up on this run?

The 12athon is truly bonkers.


  1. I wore that exact same shirt for my 12athon run. I should give us style points for unintentional twinsies.

  2. @Iris - LOL! I'll take style points!

    @Josh - Hey, I had misplaced that bright side! Thanks for finding it...

  3. Well at least you have 1 day of rest before Little River tomorrow morning.
    The Godiva Team is expecting 100% effort, which means vomiting blood at the end.
    But it's only 10 miles, so you should be able to push through it. Oh, don't forget the Eno Equalizer on Sunday...

  4. Hilarious. At least you were able to partake. I was riding a stationary bike in a dusty basement. Nice job!!

  5. @ac - I'm prefueling tonight with beer. Everything will be fine, just fine....

    @Sean - There is something to be said for participation, even bonktacular participation.

  6. I wondered how you'd fare after running 21 Umstead miles a few days ago, Scott. The fact that you plugged through all of those miles is a victory for the 12athon. You bonked and kept goin' for the team, man. Way to go!

    Third picture from the bottom: I call that tree the "butt tree", because whatever that mass is, it looks like a butt on one side (not the side you photographed). No, I am not a child.

    1. What can I say, Ash. I'm a giver. :-)

      I say we call that tree the "Butt Cramp Tree". So totally appropriate for Turkey Creek Trail to have a BCT.

      Oh, and we have young kids, so potty humor is totally appropriate.

  7. So, you say you've been doing a wee bit of running eh?
    Wow Scott, I in awe! What a great job. Love the pics.
    Oh, and behalf of all the people I encounter over the next few days, they all thank you for "Screw you meat! I'm in charge!" For I will be saying that to them all.

    1. Yeah, just a wee bit RDL. Of course, everything is relative. My 47 mile week is chump change to those "real" runners out there throwing down 70-90 miles per week.

      Thanks so much for the compliments on the blog! And congrats on your own ridiculous 12athon run! There's no way I could pull off the baker's dozen, even at the JV level. Me and wheat are mild enemies, and gluten free baked goods taste horrible!

  8. I think we all need shirts that say, "Screw you, meat! I'm in charge!" for the 12athon.

    1. I think we could arrange that...

      Maybe Iris could sell custom shirts in a 12athon store. I don't think she's making any money for all the time she's spending on this madness.


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