Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Beast Below

A horse and a Man, above, below.
One has a plan but both must go.
Mile after Mile, above, beneath
One has a smile and one has teeth.

Though the man above might say hello
Expect no love from the Beast Below

This great little poem is from an episode of the new series of Doctor Who - probably the best show on tv. While I'm still getting used to Matt Smith as the new Doctor (I'm afraid David Tennant was a pretty hard act to follow), this episode was a good one.

And the poem really speaks to me as a runner - it speaks of the grit and determination that lurks beneath the surface. When you run long distances you have to have some steel inside. Call it your "inner wolf" or your "beast below", it's what carries you through the low points and keeps you moving when you're tired and miles from home. At some point in a marathon or an ultra you will need to dig deep, and when that happens you need something to fall back on.

Over the past few years I have collected a formidable bag of mental tricks, and I think I'll add this poem to it.

It's been a good week for working out, even though I'm still not getting many miles in. On Sunday I did yoga and circuits which left me sore for days. But I hit the hills of Bull Creek hard on Monday afternoon (with temperatures in the 90s). Wednesday I did another round of weights and this evening I did hill repeats on the Endo Valley loop in Walnut Creek with temps once again in the 90s.

I think summer's on the way.

I very nearly got up early on Tuesday morning to go run, but "the beast below" must have been asleep because bed won out (helped by the "I'm really sore" excuse). I know that I only have to make the breakthrough once to get back in the groove, so it's got to happen sooner or later.

Who knows, maybe it'll happen tomorrow.

No comments: