Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Visit From Coach R.D.

It's another lovely day in Paradise aka Streeterville, boys and girls. The sun comes and goes today and the skies are mostly cloudy, but it has not rained as yet and it is 76 degrees at the Mini. Funny how the clouds affect the goings on in Streeterville Bay aka "The Playpen." Most of the partying types have eschewed (Gezundheit!) the bay for the day, but the serious types, the Lone Water Skier, the "We love our jet skis" people, and of course the cruise boats from Navy Pier are here.

Today we are very lucky to have a guest here at Views, Coach R.D. Coach R.D. likes to pay us a little visit every now and again and answer questions from those amateur runners who appear every summer, and suddenly decide that they too can run a marathon, compete in a triathlon, or sometimes, just lose enough weight so that they don't qualify as morbidly obese. Coach R.D. is, in fact, such a talented coach that on occasions he can actually anticipate questions from athletes without them even asking the question. The answers are generally spot on, despite what those who didn't ask the questions in the first place really want to hear.

Our first question comes from Ugotta B. Kiddinmee in downtown Chicago. Ugotta wants to know, "Hey I'm 58 years old and while I'm not bad for a fat old guy, I'd like to be faster yet. I've seriously considered adding speed work to my training program, but I'm afraid that people will people laugh at me? Will people be grossed out by the sight of a human butterball hurtling around the track at the unheard of speed of 10 minutes per mile?

Coach R.D. replies: Ugotta, the ugly truth is that people will laugh. If you wish to scale greater heights, if you wish to "dream the impossible dream," aka a 9 minute mile, you have to develop a thick skin. Let it all hang out. I just have one question of you. Do you have those huge "man breasts" that jiggle when you run and flap around at a different rate than the jiggling roll of fat around your waist? If so, give us a break man, Ugh! Or maybe you could go to the track really early in the morning when no one else is there. Have a nice day.

Our next question comes from Ing Glishmann in Lakeview. Ing wants to know, "Coach I run pretty fast and I like women, but I can't seem to get the two together. Every time I meet a woman that I like she seems to be too slow and the next thing you know I'm at the finish line alone. What to do?

Coach R.D. replies once again: Ing, old sport, the thing is you have to decide what it is you really want. Do you want to win races or do you want to have a relationship with a woman. Coach is reminded of one track and field star who found that when he slowed down a couple of minutes per mile he met a lot more women. Of course the same man got so carried away that he contracted a sexually transmitted disease and his brain rotted away. Just depends on what you value. In this case, it sounds to me like you're very dedicated to your running. Go out and run hard, old chap. Just don't expect to get laid very often.

Our last question comes from Magnus the Magnificent in Uptown Chicago. Magnus wants to know, "Hey I'm a really great bike rider, and I can kick ass in a short sprint, but everybody else I know has run a marathon. Is there a chance I could meet girls if I train for a marathon?

Coach R.D. replies relentlessly: Magnus, my man, I know you didn't actually ask this question, but I sense your question in the air. OK the other two guys didn't actually ask a question either. I'm on a roll. Don't stop me now. Magnus, marathon training is quite possibly the best pickup spot in the known universe. This is the biggest singles event for the health conscious since the original Whole Foods opened in Austin, Texas way back when. Go for it. You may even finish a marathon. Just remember the story I told to Ing Glishman. If you opt to slow down for the girls and say, run at a slower pace than you normally would, remember to stop for water. It's good for you, and it gives you the opportunity to carry on with the ladies. Bring a little extra GU. GU and Gatorade among friends. It's the beginning of a lovely relationship.

We at Views would like to thank Coach R.D. for his fascinating insights and hope he comes back to visit again soon. In the meantime, have a nice Tuesday and get a little exercise between drinks (Walk to the bar and back.). The coach says it's good for you.

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