Sunday, 4 October 2015

The Dread Pirate Roberts

We all have that one movie that sits firmly at the top of our favorites list. You've seen it a hundred times. You can quote 90% of the script by heart. You force your friends and kids to watch it. You own the VHS, DVD and Blu-Ray, not to mention the t-shirt, mug and board game. 

For me, this movie is The Princess Bride so it was an obvious choice to use The Dread Pirate Roberts as my pirate name when I registered for the pirate-themed 2016 Maritime Race Weekend half marathon.

Yes, you read that correctly. I, the ten-is-the-most-I'll-ever-race-yes-I'm-serious-no-I-won't-change-my-mind reluctant racer, have registered for a half marathon.

I really never thought that I would ever want to run a half marathon. EVER. I mean who in their right mind wants to run 21.1 kms? That means running for two and a half hours! Why would I ever consider doing that?

Yet, here I am, registered.

I guess it's because things have improved for me on the running scene this past year. No, I haven't gotten any faster. No, it hasn't gotten any easier. But I made a few changes that made running more enjoyable which means the longer distances are no longer something only to be observed from the side lines. 

Plus there are about 40 PRCers going and there's a huge party afterwards that I don't want to miss. 

According to the race website,, there is a massive Pirate Jamboree post race which includes music, food and libations. Everyone will be dressed like a pirate. That's exactly how I want to celebrate my first half marathon. 

It's also two days before International Talk Like A Pirate Day (September 19, 2016) so fingers crossed the pirate attitude will carry over to Sunday's flight home.

The race was the primary topic of conversation at the Thursday evening run. Sporting our new Biped running shirts, it took me all of five seconds to convince Renee that she was going to do the half as well. We discussed what our training plan should be and both agreed that following the typical training plans just wouldn't work for us. Running five days a week? Not happening. Fartleks? Umm, no. Tempo runs? Very funny.

We decided on a plan that has mostly 5 K runs with a long run every second weekend, with the scatter 8 K thrown in for good measure. There are more rest days than run days. The most important part of the plan would be having tea post run. And maybe a doughnut. Or McDonald's.

I know this probably isn't the best way to train for a half marathon but it's what will work for me. If I have to run five days a week, do tempo runs, hill training, fartleks, cross training and strength training all while still trying to have some sort of a normal home life, I'll quit before the first week is out. 

The goal is to cross the finish line. I won't be at my peak physically and I won't be breaking any records. At the end of the day I will have a half marathon PB and the time it takes doesn't matter. The course is open for 6 hours and I'm sure I can make it across the finish line before the last ambulance does. That is if I don't get sidetracked by eating the candy and relaxing in the Adirondack chairs that are available along the route.

I just have to figure out how to carry all the Rice Krispie cookies I'll need for that distance. But there's plenty of time for that. 

In the mean time, I think I'll watch a movie. In case you're wondering, The Princess Bride is On Demand. Inconceivable!

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