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Prez Corner

President’s Corner: February 2012

By Mark Frankel

I tried a new pre-run meal last week: sushi……

.. Ok, I didn’t plan it intentionally.  It just worked out that way.  I took the day off from work to drive my wife to a class.  I didn’t have time to do my usual morning run, so I decided I’d run in the afternoon.  On the way back from class, though, my wife decided to treat me to a really nice sushi buffet.   Granted, it didn’t quite fit into my training plans, but who was I to refuse?

This might seem like a bit of a cognitive dissonance, but I figured that I’d have three DT: that’s just a silly way of saying I had three hours of digestion time.  Even though I stuffed myself silly at the restaurant, the meal was over at one, and my run wasn’t until four.  In my experience, that was plenty of time.

I fondly recalled the time years ago when I mystery shopped a Quick Check at 6 am, and then ran a 10K at 9.  Not only didn’t I feel any ill effects from the ham and cheese sub I had, but I ran my best time in years.  So now, with three hours to digest my food and only a training run scheduled instead of a race, I thought I should be fine.  Besides, this was sushi, and no matter how much of it you eat, you’re always hungry an hour later.

As you’d expect, though, the plan didn’t quite work out as well as I hoped.  Maybe it was just due to circumstances beyond my own control, or just plain stupidity, or more likely, a combination of the two.  Perhaps, though, it was punishment for going out to eat without the kids.

We picked up them up from their respective schools around three and then split up.  She took my six- (almost seven-) year old daughter home from school, whereas my son and I strolled over to a nearby store to pick up some forms while waiting for babysitting at the Y to open at four.

My first mistake was the route I took.  Our Y has a cinder track on its property, and I walked past it.  And with my son loving running, he asked me to run.  It’s hard for me to say no to something like that.  Granted, I was only two DT, but three-year old boys don’t lend themselves to having their Daddies thinking rationally.

We ran three laps (it’s not a standard length, it’s five laps to a mile).  After that, we headed off to the store.  It was also after the run that I remembered the sushi.  These things have a way of making themselves remembered.

At four, we returned to the Y, having picked up the necessary forms.  Here I checked him into babysitting so I could go to them gym.  My plans were to go out for a nice, easy run, but I then remembered that I can’t leave the building:  the babysitting police had to know where I was in case they needed to come after me to bail my kid out.  So my road-running plans were out, replaced by a treadmill.

My big problem with treadmills is that I easily get bored unless I push the buttons on them.  So that means that my treadmill pace is usually harder than if I just ran outside.  While I’m on the road running by myself, I do what my body feels like.  On the treadmill, though, I do what my sneaky little fingers tell me to do.  I usually press the speed button too many times and hope that I’ll manage to hang on.

Somehow I managed to hang on for seven miles, which tends to be a rather standard length for a mid-week treadmill run.  And, of course, by button problem was a factor too:  it woke the sushi from its slumber.  Fortunately, it didn’t wind up on the ‘mill, but let’s say my good lunch was seen and smelled by all within twenty feet or so of me.  It was particularly traumatic for the people who drank at the water fountain behind me.

So, anyway, here’s my advice: if you’re thinking of experimenting with pre-race meals, you might want to cross sushi off your list.  I can honestly say that it’s a bad idea.

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