Welker stuns the world with explanation of what caused his Super Bowl blunder.

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – In a stunning post-game press conference revelation, the usually sure-handed receiver Wes Welker shocked reporters when he attributed his sudden case of butterfingers to “sex acts of a self-induced nature”.  Silenced by the receiver’s salacious comments, the huge contingency of sports writers could only stare as Welker’s unbelievable tale of lust and betrayal unfolded.

Okay, everybody settle down.  Obviously that headline and opening paragraph are fictional.  Maybe I’m trying out for The Onion.  Maybe I really dislike the Patriots.  Maybe I think Welker deserves a little karmic payback for these jabs he took at poor Rex Ryan and his foot fetish.

Or maybe I want to see if some crazy headline will draw people to this blog. Whatever the case, if you’re a regular reader, welcome back.  If not, if you’re someone sucked in by the headline, what the hell, you might as well hang out and read the rest of this thing.  Maybe this is just the shock to the system needed to finally push you away from the internet and out into the real world where you can actually do something productive, like start training for a marathon.

Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.  Where were we?  Ah yes, last time we left our intrepid over-the-hill runner, he had less than 12 weeks left until he finally got to run the Boston Marathon.  Let’s peek in on him now, shall we?

Finding Motivation

With eleven weeks to go until I finally stepped foot on that hallowed ground between Hopkinton and Boston, I found myself struggling for motivation.  After all, I’d already qualified.  Now I would just be collecting  my reward, namely running the Boston Marathon.

Then Sunday came.  After struggling through a 12-miler, my longest run since October, I plopped down on my couch, ready to stuff my face with junk food, watch TV, and fade in and out of consciousness all day.  Before taking my first nap, I flipped open my laptop and checked in on my Facebook buddies.

Alex mentioned a track meet on ESPN2 so I quickly turned on the TV to watch.  Early in the men’s mile, Mo Farrah, Great Britain’s latest phenomenal middle distance runner in a long line of phenomenal middle distance runners, got tripped up and fell.  He easily could have gotten up and stepped off the track and no one would have thought lesser of him for it.  Instead, he got up and ran a personal best of 3:57.  You heard me, THREE FIFTY-SEVEN, a sub-4-minute mile after falling down.

Mo falls in the early stages of the mile...

...and hops right back up to run a 3:57! A THREE-FIFTY-SEVEN, AFTER FALLING!!!

While I continued to watch the meet, someone posted this link on Facebook.  50 years ago this week, fellow Tar Heel alum Jim Beatty became the first person ever to break the 4-minute mile indoors.  Check out the video of that momentous feat here (thanks to Mike Kahn of Why Marathon for finding and posting this!)

Jim Beatty, the greatest North Carolina runner ever

The running gods were not whispering a message to me, they were screaming it.  You will give this your all!  By all that is holy, you will train hard, and you will race hard, and you will not forsake all those that  have run that hallowed ground before you!  You will not betray the honor of those that worked so hard, and sacrificed so much, and gave it their very best on that sacred 26.2 mile stretch of road between Hopkington and Boston.  You might not PR, but by god you will try!

I felt like I had been slapped in the face, like the ghost of Pre himself walked into my home, grabbed me by the shoulders, shook violently, and yelled, “Haven’t you heard yet?  To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift!”  Don’t worry, Pre.  I vow right now to give it my all.

See ya in Boston boys and girls.  Oh and hey, Wes, if you’re in town April 16th, I was just kidding, bro.


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