Friday, May 4, 2012

Three years

It occurred to me the other day that the Mudpuppy Chase on Sunday will be my first 10k in almost three years - the last one was the Eaton Electrical Downtown Dash in July 2009, coincidentally the day before my 30th birthday. Since I'm nearing my 33rd year, it's strange to think that I wasn't even thirty yet when I last ran a 10k!

Prep has gone fairly well: I've consistently hit 5 runs per week since my recovery week after Around the Bay, and have run 6 times per week in the last 3 weeks with mileage peaking in the last two (prior to this week, which is a mild taper) at over 42km. I've done some good hill repeats, some zippy tempo, and a couple of runs over 10km. I'm probably more prepared for this race than any other road race I've ever done!

Until I go and do something dumb like to go a punk rawk show..

Of course, nothing can be perfect - I'm currently operating on about 3.5hrs of sleep as a result of going to see The Real McKenzies and the Reverend Horton Heat at the Starlight Social Club in Waterloo last night. Note to self: if a Thursday night show says "doors: 9pm", Friday is going to suck hard.

Punk rawk compression socks?

Can't feel too sorry for myself, though, since the show bloody well rawked! Openers The Brains from Montreal are a surprisingly talented psychobilly band of which I look forward to hearing more. The McKenzies have yet another new lineup, but the new album Westwinds sounds fantastic and Paul is always an incredibly energetic showman - nice to get together with him and shoot the shit, too, as he's an old friend to Tanker and myself.

Paul doing his Charlie Chaplin impersonation.

The Rev tore the roof off the place, setting right to work with Psychobilly Freakout off the hop and progressing with one track per album going in chronological order from albums one through nine. Having already played huge favourites, he even took some audience requests and let a little loose toward the end. Of course, the usual showmanship that we've come to expect - hopping up on Jimbo's bass, throwing down some insane improvisation on that gorgeous Grestch under the pretense of having forgotten how the song goes (as he says, he's written and performed over 120 different original tracks in the band's 25 year history), grinning all the while. Their encore - mixing up Folsom Prison Blues and Big Red Rocket of Love while including an absolutely bloody insane drum solo by on-again-off-again member Scott "Chernobyl" Churilla - was something I don't think I'll ever forget! Mikkey Dee, you officially have competition.

Show swag, including the McKenzies set list - thanks Pauli!

I was actually happy that the concert was starting later as it gave me a chance to get a short, easy run in before we had dinner and left, but I underestimated just how much energy I'd be using at the show itself. I danced and bounced and generally moved my butt in the pit area through the entire McKenzies set and about an hour and a quarter of the Reverend's incredible performance. Things got a bit ugly in there at some points when some exception was taken, and while everything came out friendly in the end, I did manage to get a bit tenderized in the process. A bit stiff getting out of bed this morning and I'm sore and weary, but I'm hoping that's nothing a good couple of nights' sleep, taking tonight off completely, and doing some easy movement tomorrow won't fix. Regardless, it was an amazing night with good friends!

All that's left now is for me to get fully rested up and back to 100% before Sunday. I've managed to drop another 2lbs, putting me about a pound and a half below the lowest weight I achieved last year, so that ought to help. I've also finally examined the website a bit closer and discovered that the route for the race has changed completely since 2009! It still uses mostly the same roads, but goes in the opposite direction and now includes a short out-and-back at the 3k mark of the five kilometer loop. In plotting it out, it doesn't actually appear to be quite as hilly as I'd been expecting, so there's another bit of assistance!

I'd like to make one last plea for donations for KidsAbility - special needs kids really do benefit from their programs, and you can help bring skills and confidence to the life of someone who needs a little extra hand in life. Please click here and pledge whatever you are able - both credit cards and PayPal are accepted, and you'll instantly receive a tax receipt. It only takes a minute, but it will mean so much to a child!

On Sunday morning we shall see what three additional years of running experience can do for my 10k time. I've done the work, so now all that remains is to make it hurt out on the course. The 2009 Mudpuppy Chase was only my second race ever, so I'm hoping that age and cunning can triumph over youth and enthusiasm! 

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