Okay, so the cartoon is a little graphic, but imagine how charged up the bull would be once the match is applied to the sensitive part..Thats how I charged out of the blocks to begin the Tackle the Tower on Saturday Am. Let me set this up quickly. 37 floors. The Galleria downtown Cleveland. More than 700 people were entered. Every ten seconds another racer would go off. The Bull just has to go crazy for 10-20 seconds. He throws off a cowboy, gets chased by clowns. Stair-climbers have to sustain in a theatre of anerobic agony.
I took off and flew up the first 4-5 floors. Then the lungs started screaming. My insides were calling out insults every few seconds. The legs were fine. I used the handrails to help propel me upward. It was kinda tight in there and I would pass someone, every 30 or 40 seconds. I only looked at the stairs in front of me. Never looked up. Never looked down. Wanted to get out of my mind, that I was in this claustrophobic arena. That claustrophobia started when I flew with the Blue Angels 3 years ago. It picked up even more when I was strapped into a Indy 2-seater race car with Sebastian Bourdais 2 years ago. Those are posts for some other day..
I had no idea what floor I was on. I tried to block all that out. Just go hard and die trying. I heard sounds bouncing off the concrete walls. It was disorienting.
Soon I heard cheering and figured I was close. Next thing you know. 7 minutes, 11 seconds, I was done... I could feel the blood coming up my throat. The searing pain of the lungs on fire. Ended up coughing the rest of the day. Hard. Sunday my ribs hurt from all the coughing.
Hermes had the results posted pretty quickly on Saturday night. Check em out I wore bib #583. 50-54 Men. 255th out of 711 racers. My hero is Paul Tepley. He's a firefighter. He beat me by 11 seconds........wearing 70 pounds of firefighter gear. WOW. Mentor, Hudson, Willoughby, and several other communities had their finest racing. Props to the firefighters.
Clue to those thinking of racing next year. Sign up early. I had to wait almost 2 hours because I signed up the last week. My son Pat ran over from his apartment, and we hung out in the Galleria...ran about 30-minutes to keep loose and pass the time. He couldn't afford to wait more than 2 hours to race, so he decided not to sign up. I believe the winning time was about 5 minutes. Amazing.
5 Degrees of Seperation
Monday morning. 5 degrees outside. Windchill put it way below zero. How cold??? See the picture of the slushy at the local gas station. Thats windshield wiper fluid. Frozen Tundra weather. So naturally, I went out for a 40 minute run. Wouldn't you??? Of course. Perfect way to begin the week. I was bundled up just fine. Had extra protection for the "boys" . Thats no small concern. Just ask Speedo Steve. This was one of the funniest posts I have read in awhile. Sorry that Steve had to pay the price for my amusement.
I have figured out how to celebrate my 55th birthday. I will fill you in later... Adios