“Gratitude turns what we have into enough.” —Aesop
10 men decided that having a bad case of the Mondays means running up the steepest hills in Charlotte, repeatedly. Here’s what we did.
Out the lot to Blue Ridge, x3 up the hill, 30 merkins at the top when you’re done with trip #3…then continue over to Mountainview/Old Bell Rd. hills, x3 up both to the cul de sac, 30 merkins at the top when you’re done with trip #3…then right on Wilby and continue down until you get to Sardis, x3 back up the hill on Wilby, 30 merkins at the top when you’re done with trip #3.
Once done, continue “loop” around back to bottom of Blue Ridge, x2 up the hill, 20 merkins after trip #2…up Mountainview/Old Bell Rd., x2 up the hills, 20 merkins after trip #2…up Wilby/Sardis, x2, 20 merkins after trip #2…
[No time for one “last round” of the hill trio … #sorrynotsorry]
Back to the flag for the Pledge (eventually) and back home.
6.66 (#naturally) miles of BS.
Not Killing Fishwrap. Fishwrap is back! Well, not to Horsey today – and not that he was ever really dead and gone – but still. Fish takes an extended “break,” comes back to Q a workout, writes a bblast, and the Metro Pax goes insane with delight as they were apparently experiencing some kind of withdrawal. I’m just including his name in this backblast so that the F3 content aggregators capture this and I can get some better SEO and readership. Anyhoo, more to the point of this header, like Fish, I’m not down with the whole video backblast trend either so Fish will live another day…or at least he will not die at my hand today. (You’re welcome.) Now, maybe if the production values and scripting were improved I can get down with the v-ackblast, but under no circumstance should anyone ever film yourself while you are driving! C’mon, that’s just stupid. #AntiHIM
Holy Hell. Good Lord, that was sucktastic today, with heavy emphasis on the first syllable. Awful really. I was sweating so much that was my shoes were squeaking 30 minutes into this hellscape … and I had a puddle on my floorboards after getting home. The double Mountainview/Old Bell hill is a soul-crushing monster, and I now hate everyone who lives there because your house required a road be constructed to reach your “look-how-high-I-am” Ivory Tower, why-dont-you-just-move-to-Asheville houses. I added the merkins because this is America and we can’t go all running only here at Horsey. My Q thought was that they were going to give the runner a little break, but it never felt like we got much of one. Thin Slice summed it up best: “I think my HR is at 300 now, Lee. Nice.”
Chester Fake News? Never seen even a glimmer of this local legend, fully clothed or in his underwear, and I’ve never spotted any lit cigarettes floating out in the woods. Just another urban legend like Nessie, Big Foot, or the Lizard Man of Scape Ore Swamp (#worthaGoogle) if you ask me. Now, I did see some dude doing one of those obnoxiously long wheelies on his bike (#envious) going south on Sardis at the end of the workout though. Literally watched him ride it like that for 50 yards or so in the middle of the road. Now, if that was Chester, then I apologize. That dude is a baller.
”RUN AWAY!!!!!” Saw at least 3 rabbits hopping together across the road as Thin Slice and I were approaching Blue Ridge the first time. Immediately thought of Monty Python but didn’t say anything to Slice. Should’ve. Regretted it. Sharing it now.
#BeeBest. Got stung on my thigh by something heading towards our last round on Wilby/Sardis. Still hurts now. Had to hike up my shorts for the last half mile or so to keep it from being too annoying. #TMI No venom required to be sucked out (thankfully, but your offer was appreciated, Slice) and no EpiPen needed. Your continued thoughts and prayers are welcome at this time, but I please ask that you respect my privacy during this difficult time.
Life Lesson: Gratitude. Be grateful for everything you have, no matter how much or how little you have. That’s it, that’s the lesson. 3 short, on-point stories:
- July 4. Had the good fortune of pushing a #SpeedforNeed chariot for the first time last week with Egypt. We pushed along a young man, Devon, who gives great hugs but can’t do very much on his own. He can’t walk or talk and has a hard time holding things and probably doing almost anything by himself. His mom was one of the sweetest and nicest persons I’ve ever met, and it was crystal clear she loved her son so much no matter what. She was so happy for him to participate in the race, so happy for us to push him along…and she just seemed grateful for everything. Honestly, I don’t know or rather I don’t feel like I did anything of true worth for her or Devon, but I hope that we at least gave him a chance to experience a run, which he can’t do on his own, to feel a breeze in his face and to give him some joy and happiness from the event. I don’t know Devon’s full condition or what he was feeling/thinking, but we had a pretty good race with him and I was certainly motivated to push myself as hard as I could because I knew he couldn’t do that himself. Egypt pushed Devon first and the 3 of us actually led the entire race field for the first 0.9 miles of the course thanks to a 2-minute head start for the #SpeedForNeed chariots. I don’t know if Devon remembers the race, but I hope so. If not, I hope he enjoyed in the moment the police escorts and the cheers and the hugs he received as much as the hugs he gave. I hope he enjoyed his medal and the time outside. I am grateful for the opportunity to be a part of that day for him, and I am grateful to have the ability to do something like that for him…and to do all of the many things I can do. And I know that I can do a lot more of those things without complaining about it (see writing/typing backblasts, doing yard work, etc., etc.).
- This morning. Running back home from the flag with Benny, who drops a nugget that he had surgery last year and was just getting back into running shape/form. What was the surgery for, I ask. Got hit by a car: broken femur, legs, etc., etc. Damn, son. I can’t imagine the pain and the difficulties you’ve had the last year+ but impressed by your attitude and your ability to pick yourself up from that “bottom” and to put in the work to get back out here. It made me grateful to run and “suffer” through the fleeting pain of this workout and my singular insect bite, which still lingers to this hour and is still a bit of pain, probably slightly less so than your broken bones and recovery…probably.
- Article from Washington Post today: a child touches an inadvertently electrified railing at a resort and is paralyzed. I have my health. My wife and kids do too. Everything can change in an instant so we’ve got to appreciate it while we’ve got it.
Know anybody who hasn’t posted in a while? Heard any good excuses from your own self-talk or from others about why you’ve been “slack” or “lazy” or “taking the summer off”? Give me an f’ing break. Stop wasting your time, suck it up and get outside while you can.
Why do we get up and out the door in the early morning to work out? Because we can … because … we … get … to. It is a blessing. The 1st F is good for your body, your mind and helps men build on their 2nd and 3rd Fs…yeah, yeah, all that. Ultimately, though, it is a gift to run and do push-ups and Baryshnikovs and whatever other “pain” the Q has in store for you. We’re training our bodies for races, journeys, climbs, hikes, events, etc., but hopefully we’re doing it to live longer and to be better stronger men for our families and communities and to be better examples for those who might look up to us.
Shameless Plugs. SpeedForNeed is looking for racers over the summer. DM their Twitter account or find Gypsy or Tolkein to ask about upcoming races. I’m going to hit you up later this week, boys!
Real Prayer Requests. Thin Slice’s brother-in-law. One of my co-workers dealing with cancer.
Sorry, this backblast is far too long. Probably making up for all of my prior missed backblasts. SYITG
“’Thank you’ is the best prayer that anyone could say. I say that one a lot. Thank you expresses extreme gratitude, humility, understanding.” —Alice Walker