“Without changes something sleeps inside us and seldom awakens. The sleeper must awaken” – Frank Herbert (Duke Leto Atreides)
So, as you saw, my girlfriend Rachel decided to get the blog rolling again. Nothing gets past that girl. So here what’s up.
Another year without XC. I don’t avoid it, it just doesn’t fit anymore. Which is lame because it’s fun and motivating. Watching the Gryphons do well is all I get right now. This is also my first fall without school or work, like, ever. Things have changed, and it registers as a lack of urgency. The change of pace has me feeling off sometimes. Equilibrium hasn’t returned yet, but it will. I’ve filled my life with good people, and they are my foundation while I transition at the moment. I read a lot of sci-fi these days. Just finished Dune today. Not surprised it’s so popular, but I couldn’t separate it from the 1984 film in my head and images of evil Sting as Feyd Rautha made me laugh. And Grand Papa from Beerfest as Duke Lato. It really was ze greatest beer in all ze vorld.
This year saw the addition of three post collegiate guys (Jeremy, Barry and Jacob) and Karine BB to Speed River. The boys moved in while I was still overseas, and Karine shortly after. When I came back, I felt like I had been missing some party for those weeks. Suddenly, I was a post collegiate athlete, and there was this crew of old friends who were now a big part of my daily life. Nixon was also new to this lifestyle. It made the transition to full-time running seem more natural, since I saw all these guys up to the same thing.
It’s an ideal situation, but training doesn’t get easier because of that. Dave has handed me some new challenges this fall. I jumped up into the distance group fairly regularly. My mileage has increased by 10-15%. These things motivate me. Working out with JRae has been a lot of fun especially since we were high school rivals for 4 years and have had a great friendship grow out of competition. But there comes a time in every season for an 800m guy, when you have to get into the nitty-gritty of the event’s specific needs. Which brings me to the last few weeks. Our mid D group, with some vets like Drew Anderson, Ryan Tapley and Chris Hutton, is actual a younger crowd. Tommy Land has proven that he has wheels, and he has shown some real guts in workouts. I’m expecting some CIS qualifying performances from those guys this year. We are also joined by transfer Andrew Costello who is very capable of making CIS. The rookies are Thomas Kemp, Liam Wilson, Jeff Thornbur, Keith Cole, Mustafa Elkurdy and Caelum Wishart. So, a lot of new faces. ALOT of potential. Dustin Gamble has returned to the fold this year as well. And occasionally we are joined by the ultimate veteran and all around hard guy, Benoit “Sunshine” Boulay as Assistant to the Travelling Secretary.
Those first few workouts where the legs go lactic are always especially difficult. One can’t bring an ounce of pride into those first sessions, because it will be rudely punched in the face.
I’m writing this from Charlottesville, Virginia. I came down here to get some solid sessions done on the outdoor track and get out of the snow for a bit. Yesterday held one of those workouts. Robby Andrews came out to watch. After the session began to look like an uphill battle, his face took on an empathic expression. He knew what I was going through. A pat on the back was all he could offer. Such fun, this sport! Anyways, the running down here is mountainous. Some solid trails and country roads with beautiful landscape views. But Christmas in Canada is always special. A couple of weeks at home and then off to Austin with the River.