Tuesday, 13 March 2012

A race report, and a fucking rant.

Well, I did a half marathon on Sunday, and it was really great. Not my part in it, I was shite, but it was a well organised and lovely event.

The Bath Half is one of Britain's biggest half marathons, and I can see why. Big time PB potential, pretty city, fairly flat course. S'nice. Oh, and plenty of toilets, all of which seemed to have toilet paper in. London, take note.

We got there, three of us, in cold and fog. When we got to the start line, clear blue skies and blazing fucking sun. Why oh why, Baby Jesus? Why do you hate me so??? Just give me one race in shitty weather and I'll PB, I know it...

Anyway, I struggled, until about 10 miles in, when I loosened up and started to enjoy myself. Those last three miles were lovely. The rest, not so much. Had to stop for a big wee (despite telling my bladder to re-absorb the fluid and use it, in the style of a boxer), then a big poo, which didn't do much for my own PB potential. But ulimately, despite the weather, the struggling, the anus, I didn't stop, not for a second. This is good. Not that I'm a stopper, but the temptation when struggling can often be there.

My companions did well too. Fred, 46, first race ever - an amazing 1:40. His secret? His knees and hips hurt if he goes slow, so he has only one speed - flat out. Marc did great too, finishing in 2:09:59. Me? 2:14, but I'm knocking seven minutes off that for the loo...

Annoying things - the corraling didn't really work. Too many fast people at the back of the green start elbowing and dodging their way through the crowds. Seriously, get there earlier and walk to the fucking front, ringpiece. And don't you let me see you collapsed by the side of the road later on because you don't have the intelligence to pace yourself.

Apart from that, an excellent experience.

In other news, the planned bookazine launch I have been working on for a fucking age has been cancelled. Less than what, six weeks before publication? Never heard of that happening before, and I am told it's because of advice from distributors because Men's Health etc have been block-booking shelf space in newsagent/bookstores in the US to fill with their regurgitated shite. I fucking hate that magazine even more now. I used to think it was just shit and is made to appeal to people who don't want to work hard, now I still believe that, but I think its publishers are also big bastards.

I know money talks. Always. But in my heart I still believe that something original, different, good will find its place in the world and if it is all of those things, grow and become something more. If it's not, it can wither and die and rightly so. But no, it's just fucking money these days.

Fucking fuck it. Seriously pissed off about that. Sorry, contributors, interviewees, photographers.

Even worse, Men's Health style covers are polluting the rest of the publishing world. The latest Runner's World in the UK has several bold lies on the cover in the exact same style:

"Lean & Fit Now" Now? Really? Erm... No. In six months, maybe.

"Beginners: ACE YOUR FIRST RACE" Wow, this one's for the morons out there. It's your first race, it's a guaranteed PB. Thanks, Runner's World!

"The Body You Want, Today!" NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO NO. This goes against what running means to me - it means progress, evolution, moving forward physically and spiritually; it is the antithesis of the instant gratification brigade and what is Runner's World doing? Pandering to that very brigade. Fucking fuckers can fuck right off.

It's all numbers and the unquantifiable quantified - "Get 11% fitter in 15 minutes", "The five-minute injury fix". It drives me insane. It's for people with no attention span, who can't watch a show from beginning to end, or read an actual book.

I'm a little cross today. Does it show?

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