Not Yet Another Statistic

With a jolt I lurch out of bed and stumble to the bathroom. The night is quiet and still but something is not right within me.

I check in with D who is yet in the midst of sleep’s blissful stupor. He’s fine. Thankfully. It’s funny how when you love someone your first thought is always for their well-being.

D’s fine. I’m not. D ran yesterday. But I must still stare down a 30 kilometre run. After I make more supplications to the porcelain god — 3 more supplications to be exact.

As I step outside I am met by air that is cool and invigorating and I’m hopeful for its restorative powers. My stride is wobbly and anemic and I promise myself to take it easy. In reality I have no other choice.

Two kilometres in and all I want more than anything is to go home and lie down. At this time I begin to wonder, is it an athlete’s resolve or foolhardiness that pushes the runner onward?

My stomach feels uncomfortably distended and I begin to break out into a sweat that I recognize has nothing to do with my run. Whipping off my toque I forge ahead.

By the 10 km mark my pace has strengthened though it is still far from strong. I begin to settle in. More importantly, I start to believe that I can finish the Β 20 kilometres that still lie ahead.

15 kilometres in and with a tailwind solidifying my efforts a sudden cramping engulfs my lower right abdomen. Too high up to be my appendix. Disconcerting nonetheless. I re-shift my focus. 20 kilometres may be all I have within me today.

Two more kilometres and the pain subsides. The 20 kilometre mark is now in sight. I opt to make it a half marathon. Then 22 kilometres.

Suddenly and mystifyingly, my mind snaps. Just as my body has begun to rally once again.

Although physically I am weakened, ultimately it is my mental focus that succumbs. With just 23 kilometres completed, I must accept the fact that it is time for me to head home.

Opening the front door of the house, a welcoming warmth soothes me. I catch a wafting of fresh brewed coffee just as D asks how I am.

Relieved that I am actually improved from when he last saw me, D flashes an impish grin and imparts a statistic he’s heard.

“You know 1 out of every 100 runners poops their pants.”

I return his smile with a toothy one of my own.

It’s good to be home.

It’s also good to know that I am not yet another statistic.

Thanks D.

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5 comments

  1. shawnasob · · Reply

    There are people that would call an ambulance if they were feeling like you did. Yet you go and run more than a half marathon. What a tough mofo you are Rod! Great Job!

    1. Thanks Shawn! I gotta say it wiped me out for the rest of the day and I was in bed just after 7. Got back out there this morning though even with the snow πŸ˜ƒ

      How was the storm in your area?

      1. shawnasob · ·

        From what I hear ‘sauga got it pretty bad compared to Toronto. Driving was not fun today 😦

  2. razkristi · · Reply

    Oh man this made me laugh!
    I often pick my route based on bathroom availability πŸ™‚
    Well done on your run!

    1. Thanks Kristi! I hope to never struggle like that again!

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