Friday, April 03, 2009

The Lance Effect

Before I rode bikes, I was a runner. I’m not sure why I was ever a runner, because I rarely enjoyed it. I could probably blame my wife, who wasn’t my wife yet, as she was a runner when I met her. Like most guys trying to make girlfriends into wives, I did things that I thought would impress her and I became a runner.

Since I have serious OCD problems, I just couldn’t run for exercise or to simply impress my future wife. I had to start running in races, training harder, etc. I got a little faster and at one point clocked some 6:29/miles in a 5k race, which qualified me for the AA wave at the Bolder Boulder one year. Now I don’t want to sound braggy, but being in the AA wave at the Bolder Boulder in kind of a big deal, even if you don’t actually deserve to be there. The best part about being at the front of the Bolder Boulder is the sound of thousands of thundering footsteps of each successive wave as they catch you and drop you. I’ve gone backwards in a cyclocross race many times, but it’s nothing like the humiliation of going backwards in the Bolder Boulder.

So I did this running thing for a time. Sometimes I would enjoy running, but mostly I didn’t. Then I got married and thought less about trying to impress my wife. At the same time I discovered, thanks to my wife, the Tour de France and some guy by the name of Lance Armstrong. It wasn’t long before I bought my first road bike and stopped running entirely.
Yes, I’m a proud product of the “Lance Effect.” I just happen to be in Lance’s hood on spring break, but don’t have a bike. So, I decided to go for a run, not because I like it, but because it’s good for cross. For those familiar with Austin, I ran along the Bull Creek Greenbelt trail from about 2222 to Spicewood Springs Road. It’s an oasis in the middle of an urban jungle.
Camera phone photo dump:

And you know what, I enjoyed it!


Eric Scroger said...

I hear ya. I used to jog and ride my bike in college, mostly for fun. I ran in a couple 10ks and rode my bike for fun and fitness, but not to race.

After I got out of college, I moved to a suburb north of Dallas for work. Lance was just a high school kid then, but he was already making a name for himself in the Dallas area. I even tried triathlons for a short while before I realized I wasn't too good, although I do remember Lance was already kicking the pro triathletes' ass still in high school.

I don't know the Austin greenbelt well, but I'm familiar with it. My older bro Chris still lives in Austin, and I used to drive down and bring my bike for weekend rides. Later on, we would head over to Barton Springs for a cold dip. Good times.

Mindy Glover said...

your ran a 6:29 5k????? i have even more respect ;)I am very happy your wife has been such a good influence on you!!

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