On running…

Posted by SuperClydesdale on November 29, 2011 under Commentary | 4 Comments to Read

For a big guy who’s played a lot of sports, running has become a problem. I used to run quite a bit, but the toll it takes on knees can be significant. Some of my older sports injuries like meniscus tears, ankle sprains, and high ankle sprains, have forced me away from running on a regular basis.

Not that I was ever a true running enthusiast. Running sucks. It’s boring and inefficient. It should really only be done by women that don’t own running bras, and only when I’m present.

As I’ve grown accustomed to saying, significant injuries don’t heal, they just hide for a few years. As you age, they come back, and leave you feeling as though you just finished physical therapy on the original injury. They lurk, waiting for the right time to present themselves, then they pounce. They remind you of your mortality, and of how foolish you were in your youth, that phase in your life when you thought that you were immortal.

While running does, in fact, suck, it’s an amazingly effective workout. You can get quite an ass-kicking in an hour. That’s the downside of road riding: it’s so damn efficient. It’s hard to get a real workout in an hour. Who do you know that goes out for a 20-mile ride? Some out-of-shape fat ass, I’ll bet? If I go out, it’s at least 30 miles, and probably anywhere from 40-70 miles. That’s just what it takes to feel like I got a workout. If afterward, I can walk up a flight of stairs without complaining about it, then I didn’t get a workout. On my road bike, It’s usually a several hour ride with significant climbing to get me there. On my mountain bike, at least 90 minutes. With running, a 30-minute outing can kick my ass. Certainly my size has something to do with it. Gravity is a mean mother, and running is a constant battle. My 240 pounds bouncing up and down is an incredible bout of inefficient jostling of meat. I’ll bet it looks like I’ve got a baby carrier full of angry cats strapped to my chest as I run. You know, those cloth slings that women (and the occasional unfortunate womanly man) wear to keep their infants close by as they walk? Throw about 5 large, pissed off cats in one of those, strap it to your chest, and then I think you know what it looks like when I run. Luckily, I don’t have sensitive nipples.

I spent this Thanksgiving in southern California – Carlsbad to be precise. I didn’t have the ability to bring a bike, so I found myself at my in-laws, sans bike, and wanting to create some significant calorie banks to allow me to fully partake in the Thanksgiving feast without (too much) guilt. That, and my goal of getting a good cardio workout at least once every three days to keep my fitness level from degrading too much. More often is, clearly, better, but the three-day max seems to at least allow for maintenance of fitness when time gets scarce. My wife is a long-time runner, and we did two consecutive days of running along the beach. These were significant to me, as I rarely run. On Thanksgiving morning, we did 3.2 miles, and on “black Friday” we did 3.6. I was proud of myself because I am doing it pretty much cold turkey (no pun intended) – these were runs #3 and #4 for the year. So to belt out two runs on legs that don’t run, I was pretty happy. I was also able to push my wife to her limits as far as pace goes, so it would seem that all of my riding doesn’t leave me totally unprepared for the occasional run. I’ve done long rides with runners (my wife included), and they always seem to fare well, so I was pleased that it seemed to work the other way as well. Professional courtesy among the muscle groups I guess.

  • BigDave said,

    Sounds to me that you need to read “Born to Run” by Chris McDougall. I challenge not to want to run after reading it.. I’m a clydesdale, weighing in at 250lbs, and will be attempting to complete my first Ironman this Sunday …. and all my running is based on this book these days, and I actually enjoy it, despite previously thinking that runners were some type of second class citizen.

  • BigDave said,

    Sounds to me that you need to read “Born to Run” by Chris McDougall. I challenge not to want to run after reading it.. I’m a clydesdale, weighing in at 250lbs, and will be attempting to complete my first Ironman this Sunday …. and all my running is based on this book these days, and I actually enjoy it, despite previously thinking that runners were some type of second class citizen.

  • tsheperd said,

    another great book is barefoot running step by step. barefoot kenbob can get anyone to like running. as a 230lb with knee wear and tear, running with a more mid-foot strike as made running both more efficient and fun!

  • tsheperd said,

    another great book is barefoot running step by step. barefoot kenbob can get anyone to like running. as a 230lb with knee wear and tear, running with a more mid-foot strike as made running both more efficient and fun!

Add A Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.