Changes

 

“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.

Anthony

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Living with a Runner

So, what follows is not written by me. It’s from my girlfriend, Rachel. She’s a sweetheart and I thought this was cool.

“From the perspective of a muggle…”

Since Anthony hasn’t been keeping up with his blog writing and because I am currently procrastinating with my studies, this is the perfect time to update the blog and get it rolling. I figured we would just pick up and recap where he left off a while back.

Anthony finally finished his degree last spring and can now focus on training full time. And thank goodness he did! I know that balancing school and training last year really threw him off kilter but he has worked (and is continuing to work) very hard to get back in the rhythm he wants. After a rough summer he came back to Guelph sick and injured. I mean I literally met him at the airport with Tylenol, muffins, and a bag of ice to break the fever. After about a week or two of that he slowly started running again. He has been getting some great therapy for his stubborn ankle between his physiotherapist (Brenda), his Osteopath, and a couple different massage therapists. I help out when I can with the occasional “ankle-turn-awkward-wide-circle-thing” that he likes. At this point he has built up some serious volume over the fall season (sorry I don’t know specifics) but he has totally been bragging about it to me. No races or anything this fall just consistent training. He actually left Guelph on December 5th to head down to Charlottesville, VA for a little warmer weather training. He’s staying with an old college friend from Dartmouth, Adam, who is currently living/working down there. I also found out that he has been running with Robby Andrews. Apparently they also go for burgers. And watch sunsets together (cute!). I am anxiously awaiting his return some time next week and then we will be off to Hamilton for the Christmas holidays.

I really am new to all of this. Sure Anthony and I have been dating for 7 plus years. And yes he has always been a competitive athlete during that time. But it still took me by surprise a little when we moved in together about 8 months ago. I am not a runner or an elite athlete of any kind. I don’t even really compete for anything. Unless my fight for a passing grade in Optometry school counts. I am a student. And this whole elite athlete training has seriously impressed me.

I have never seen one person eat, sleep, workout, and repeat so much in one day. I enjoy cooking and I’ve learned some great meals over the years. Thankfully I have been taught by my Italian Nonna because I swear that cooking for Anthony is like cooking for a whole family. I don’t even understand where it all goes. At our house I think he lives by the 24 hour rule. Or maybe he thinks it’s a challenge. I could make an entire lasagna, 5 chicken breasts, and a bag of carrots and without fail 24 hours later it will be gone. Sleeping is his next favourite pastime. He probably sleeps 10 hours a night at least and naps everyday – with our dog! It is a huge surprise to me that he even has time for training but it literally takes up all of his “free” time.

Its funny living with and dating this guy because I don’t know what he does specifically. I personally have never experienced it. I know he leaves in the morning for a run or some activity (biking or pool running or elliptical riding etc.). And later in the day he’s gone again for another 4-5 hours. Running, stretching, ice-bathing, socializing, and all that stuff. I really have no idea what happens yet I can only assume its hard and exhausting to warrant the outrageous eating and sleeping habits he’s upheld. But whatever he does in those mysterious hours is working! If it weren’t, I’d know. That whole saying “happy wife, happy life” applies to athletes too. “Grumpy runner, total bummer” and “Happy runner, Way more fun(ner)”. Happy and healthy is always easier and more pleasant to be around so we are going to try and keep that up!

Overall, training is good. Eating and sleeping is good. And life is happening. I continue to learn more and more about the secret life of my mysterious boyfriend and I like it! It should be interesting to see what he can do in 2015 with a personal chef, a dog’s unconditional love, and a really wicked work ethic. As for me, I’m outta here and back to the books. Hopefully Anthony/Romo/Tony/Romzi/Ape
/weirdguyoverthere or whatever you call him will keep up with this blog writing from now on and he can update you on his exciting plans for the new year (because they are super cool and I am jealous). Happy training and Merry Christmas everyone!

Rachel

Greetings, here’s a cool video!

In the words of the famous cartoon physician, Dr. Nick Riviera: Hi Everybody!

Hopefully I am better at blogging than Dr. Nick is at his job. Fortunately for me, Andy Hourahine ( @activeandy ), a filmmaker and active lifestyle advocate, made this feature about me for next year’s PanAm Games in Toronto. So, I won’t have to do much to entertain in this first post.

I do want to say that I’m excited about this website. I want to include as many pics and video of cool running stuff, as well as other important/interesting things like cat videos and clips of my awful band playing terrible music. This blog will be about more than just me, despite the content of this cool video below. I have plenty of fantastic athletes and people in my life and I want to highlight their personalities as well.

So, in the words of the great Dave, Scott, and also Thomas, “Us northern boys gotta stick together”. I like to imagine he was talking about all Canadians when he uttered that famous line.

Enjoy. The pushups on the start line were for the ladies, obviously. And Kyle Boorsma.