Monday, September 20, 2010

Things I Learned About Writing While Running 10km

1. Runner's cramps hurt more than writer's cramps, but don't usually last as long. And Gatorade is better for the former, though further testing may be required for a definitive answer.

2. Things are always chaotic at the beginning. So many things to trip over! The slalom can be effective, but it's like tacking an extra kilometre onto your book. All's good, though, if you can find a bit of space and hit your stride.

3. Pace is wonderful, but you can go too fast. People need a chance to breathe, and air is a wonderful thing. And don't set your pace by someone who's going half the distance.

4. Properly-fitted footwear is beneficial everywhere.

5. It's okay if someone else finishes before you, as long as you get to the finish line, too. Even if it's a couple pushing racing strollers. Okay, I have no idea what that means in terms of writing, but it was a little depressing when they passed me. (Though, really, they were awesome and made of some sort of newfangled metal alloy - their children were all shiny and made of melted-down gold medals)

6. Everyone has their own speed. Finding yours is the key.

7. Potholes are to be avoided. But, every now and again, the pothole is inevitable. Pain may be involved. But keep going. There are potholes along every route. Keep your eyes peeled. Tough it out.

8. Get it done. It doesn't have to look pretty. An ungainly gait is fine, as long as it gets you where you need to go.

9. Perseverence. Sometimes it's going to hurt. Sometimes it's going to hurt a lot. We all hit points where we say "Maybe this is enough. Maybe I'll just stop here. Enough is enough." But embrace the pain. The end is only going to be sweeter for having pushed through these doubts.

10. Trying to grab and drink those little cups of water from the water station while running and breathing heavily is much harder than it looks. Plus, also, messy. This also has nothing to do with writing. Um. Don't drink and write? Okay, don't drink and write. You heard it here first.

11. Run hard at the end. The crowd always likes a good closer.

12. Hot dogs make everything feel better. Trust me.


Matthew Rush said...

That was tight. Like throwing a hot dog down a hallway.

Also, I'm not sure Faulkner would agree with number 10.

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

It took me a long time to acquiesce to No. 4.

I have no idea how anyone drinks and writes. I can barely drink and sit up straight.

Good for you for finishing (also: starting)!

Mira said...

Yay Bryan! Congratulations and thanks for the run. :)

I'm so sorry the strollers passed you, though. I'm sure they had hidden combustion engines.

Appreciate your points about perseverence, pacing and footwear.
And hot dogs. Naturally.

Bryan Russell (Ink) said...

Thanks, guys. It actually went quite well, all things considered. Up all night with sick daughter, but still ran well. Cracked 50 minutes! This is pleasing, after all the obstacles. So I'm happy.

And I do love Faulkner, I must admit.

Matthew Rush said...

Well old Willy was a bit of an evil genius. The Sound and the Fury is one of my favorites of all time, even though I've read it 3 times and still don't know exactly what all happens.

Claudie A. said...

Love love love number 9. I've been there (though not with running), and I know it to be true.

Also, I must disagree with 10. I drink all the time while writing. Coffee, mind you, not alcohol. Someday my computer will pay for it, I bet.

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