Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Last minute jitters.

This week is parent-teacher conference week in Rio Rancho. Actually, the 30th and 31st were set aside, with no school being taught on those days, for conferences, but when you have a thousand or so licensed staff having been told, "now, if you are able to hold the conferences early you will only have to come in for half of one of the two conference days," the result is, well, a thousand or so teachers who work every night the week prior, cramming in conferences so that they can have one-and-a-half whole days off. Of course, one of days will be spent by me driving back from SOMA fingering, I hope, a finisher's medal.

The end of the grading period is chock full of panicked kids wishing they just had a couple more days to make up all that work they neglected for the past nine weeks, and even a few panicked parents who call me and ask me, "Can all this missing work be turned in now? Is there extra credit?"

Sorry, kid. You might as well realize that you can't make up months of neglect in a couple of days. If you could, there'd be no such thing as a taper.

"What's a taper?"

Of course, this week also means that a teacher somewhere is trying to cram my conference about the Jonster in as well. And so it was that I was sitting across from my son's very nice, very affable advisor for the year, who is also one of his JROTC commanders. He's also an ex runner, so we spent some time chatting about that.

I like talking to runners about running, because I like being in their little club, but sometimes, it's intimidating. Not as intimidating as it would be, say, to live in Boulder, but almost. Real runners say things like, "well, I thought about doing some more races, but you know, I just could never cross that 6-minute barrier." or, "I'd like to do more marathons, but I never could quite manage to keep up my 8-minute mile for that long."

Blink, blink.

Oh! um, was I supposed to nod and laugh knowingly? Like I, myself was having that same problem? Actually, I'm still trying to consistently cross that 11-minute barrier on anything other than a 5K. However, I do appreciate the assumption that I look that I could commiserate.
I think I look kinda sporty these days. One of my work collegues told me that they were looking for my name in the paper after the Duke City Marathon, but didn't see it.

(Uh, Ed, I wasn't in that marathon, and even if I were, they only printed the names of the 10 or so front runners. But, thanks--thanks for looking, and thinking that I'm a contender, and that my name would be in the paper.)

Four more days until Soma, and luckily the parent-teacher conferences all week will keep my mind busy and quell that last-minute panic that's setting in, the "wait! oh, wait! give me just one more week - I can get faster, really I can, watch me blow my taper as I desperately try to get some speedwork in a few days before a major event!"

So, in 4 days I'll find out if my performance at the Redman was an anomaly or if I really am that silly and slow. Another chance for me to panic and wish I had pedaled harder all those times behind Sweet Baboo. Another chance for me to wish I'd really pushed it and hadn't skipped any of those training days.

Wait! Can I make up the work late? hey, is there extra credit?



  1. I like that thought. Can you give me some extra credit assignment, please!!?? I NEED IT TO GRADUATE TO BECOME AN IRONMAN!!! Yeah, I know the race is only 10 days away, but you must have SOMETHING I could do....

  2. You are going to do great! Just keep breathing... :)

  3. Yeah - I hate that. You're feeling confident about your running, actually start to believe you are are true runner, then a "real" runner talks about their slow pace which is a pace not yet even attainable. I also enjoy all the pace charts out there that start at 10 min/mile. Screw em! I run, therefore I am a runner!

  4. Don't worry! You already have an A+ locked in with all of your training. The race itself is the extra credit!!!

  5. 6 minute barrier? Um, no. I respectfully disagree - that's snobby elitist runner, not "real" runner.

    I like Galloway's heirarchy, it makes sense to me (the 5 stages of a runner)

    BELIEVE IN YOURSELF. Who else have you got?!

    well, except Myles...and the rest of us here...

  6. Your going to do great. Race within yourself and have fun. That is what it is all about anyway. Congrats on signing up for IMKY. Way to go.


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