Tag Archives: Track and Field

WE deserve it, do YOU?

20 Feb

(Important note for this post- This is written from a collegiate runners POV, but many of my experiences are the same for athletes in all of the other collegiate sports.  I’m not looking for a pat on the back for describing my schedule/stresses, I can do that myself.)
(Important note number 2: Anytime I write a potentially offensive post, I get a pretty sizable amount of hate mail/bashing comments.  Y’all, read some of my posts. Take things with a grain of salt, relax, and enjoy these for their mix of humor and truth.)

You know something has to get me pretty worked up to bring my blogging self back from the dead.  I was just peacefully scrolling through my Twitter Feed while sitting on the toilet before my night run when I saw this “article” retweeted by an Illinois athlete.

http://www.dailyillini.com/opinion/columns/article_826b725e-7a47-11e2-a1c6-001a4bcf6878.html

Take a minute to calm down before you read this post.  Maybe go for a run, take a hot shower.

Ok, do you have yourself collected?  Good.  Let’s destroy this horrible human being’s argument.

Before we even get to taking apart how poorly written, biased, unsupported, and stupid this article was, let’s start by looking at a picture of the gal who wrote the piece (it’s not creepy, her picture is in the article)

The symbol of America's oppressed college student, a pretty white female.

The symbol of America’s oppressed college student: a pretty white female.

Also, this was posted in the comments section on your article, but looking at your room really makes me feel for you.  Life looks pretty damn tough 😦  YOU’RE AN RA, YOU DON’T EVEN PAY FOR HOUSING YOU IDIOT.

Next, let me give you a few tips on journalism, dear.  I know it’s an opinion piece, but tip number one:
Don’t discredit your authority in the first few paragraphs of your article.

“I never finished the mile run. I always dropped out around a third of the way to puke or pass out — whichever came first”

LOL. Wait, WHAT??  You can’t run 533ish meters without puking or passing out?  You expect anybody to take you seriously after opening with something like that?  I sure hope you’re exaggerating and this claim isn’t true.  I guess I wouldn’t expect a cardio system to be very efficient in somebody who is so cold-hearted.  I know 200+ pound non-athletes that can run longer than that.  I know people without the bottom half of their legs that can run much further than that, except they use their talent to murder their girlfriends, unfortunately (too soon, I know.)

THIS guy is fitter than you. Hit the gym, girl.

THIS guy is fitter than you. Hit the gym, girl.

“This occurred to me as I noticed my one friend take out her student athlete class planner. I front a small fee for an iBook. Her student athlete school supplies are free.”

A.) You only have one friend?

B.)  I’ve been informed by people at your own school that iBooks can be obtained for free at the Illini Union Bookstore.  Are you paying just so you can get more people to listen to you whine?

C.) Yes, some of us at our respective Universities get free planners.  PLANNERS.  I have never received free pencils, books, pens, papers, notebooks etc. etc.  Maybe your school has a special deal with Staples, or maybe you’re just making another unsupported claim.

Student-Athlete Planners, the number one coveted athletic benefit by muggles nationwide

Student-Athlete Planners, the number one coveted athletic benefit by muggles nationwide

“Not only do they get blue and orange gear free of charge, which includes those trademark Nike tracksuits and backpacks, but student athletes are also privy to tutoring services that the rest of us standard, non-athletic-scholarship students have to go out of our way for or otherwise not have. But I wonder how many of those athletes would be doing so well if they were just plain, non-athlete students?”

Give me your address, I’m being serious.  I will gladly mail you some of my gear for free (as long as it’s not an NCAA violation to do so).  Also, I haven’t met with a tutor since my freshman year in the Fall of 2009.  But say I did need to use a tutor, let’s just examine how “unfair” this is that I could see one for “free”.

Please, dear, tell me how rough your schedule must be.  Tell me how hard studying must be with all of your free time.  Do you have the slightest clue what it means to have the schedule of a student-athlete?  Do you think we can have the same class schedule as you?  Think we can start classes at noon and go until 5pm instead of 8am to 1pm?  Here is a quick look at my schedule.  With this schedule, the best I could work it out since these are required classes for my major, I have to miss practice THREE out of the FIVE schooldays every week (Regular practice is at 2:30pm, I can only attend M/W).

Monday (MY EASY DAY):
8:00am-9:00am- Morning run (6-10 miles)
9:00am-9:30am- Stretch, roll out, rehab, ice bath
9:30am-10:00am- Shower, get dressed, maybe get coffee/eat, take the bus to campus
10:00am-12:00pm- African American Studies 490
12:00pm-2:00pm- Eat lunch, get homework started, make my way to training room.
2:30pm-5:00pm- Practice (10-16miles depending on workout) (Note to NCAA- don’t total up these hours because they aren’t all observed)
5:30pm-6:30pm- Shower and eat
6:30pm-10pm- Homework (once again, remember this is my EASY day)

Tuesday:
5:30am-6:00am- 3-4mi jog in the dark, usually below 15 degrees
6:00am-6:40am- Eat breakfast, get dressed for Student-Teaching
6:40am-7:20am- Pick up carpooling classmates and drive to Saline High (20min away)
7:30am-11:29am- Student-Teaching with 10th-12th grade English Students
11:29-12:00pm- Get back to campus and drop off classmates at their houses.
12:00pm-1:00pm- Drop car off at track, get on bus to campus, eat lunch, get to North Quad basement for class
1:00pm-2:30pm- Writing 300 (Peer Tutoring for Education Majors)
2:30pm-4:00pm- Ed 391 (Educational Psychology)
4:00pm-6:00pm- Ed 307 (Education Practicum)
6:00pm-6:30pm- Take bus to the track, get changed, and get ready to run by myself for the second time of the day.
6:30pm-7:30/8:oopm- 10-14 mi depending on workout
8:00pm-8:45pm- Shower and eat
8:45pm-10:00pm- Homework (even though I’m usually completely spent by this time)

Wednesday (My “Easy” day again):

8:00am-9:00am- Morning run (6-10 miles)
9:00am-9:30am- Stretch, roll out, rehab, ice bath
9:30am-10:00am- Shower, get dressed, maybe get coffee/eat, take the bus to campus
10:00am-12:00pm- African American Studies 490
12:00pm-2:00pm- Eat lunch, get homework started, make my way to training room.
2:30pm-5:00pm- Practice (10-16miles depending on workout)
5:30pm-6:30pm- Shower and eat
6:30pm-10pm- Homework (once again, remember this is my EASY day)

Thursday:
6:00am-6:40am- Eat breakfast, get dressed for Student-Teaching
6:40am-7:20am- Pick up carpooling classmates and drive to Saline High (20min away)
7:30am-11:29am- Student-Teaching with 10th-12th grade English Students
11:29-12:00pm- Get back to campus and drop off classmates at their houses.
12:00pm-1:00pm- Drop car off at track, get on bus to campus, eat lunch, get to North Quad basement for class
1:00pm-2:30pm- Writing 300 (Peer Tutoring for Education Majors)
2:30pm-4:00pm- Ed 391 (Educational Psychology)
4:00pm-4:30pm- Take bus to track, get ready to run alone.
4:30pm-6:00pm- 12-16 miles
6:00pm-6:30pm- Shower, get dressed, get home
6:30pm-7:00pm- Cook and eat dinner
7:00pm-9:00pm- Hmwk
9:00pm-10/11pm- Spend time with girlfriend, my cherished free time I’ve made for myself.

Friday:
9:00am-10:00am-5-8mi depending on what I plan on getting out of afternoon run
10:30am-1:00pm- My best time span for doing homework during the week.
1:00pm-4:00pm- Education 440 (Teaching English, Methods Course)
4:00pm-4:30pm- Get to track, get ready to run
4:30pm-5:30/6pm- 10-12mi depending on total for the day/week

Saturday:
“Easy Day” if there is no meet, generally run 5-10mi and do work the rest of the day.
If there is a meet, I would have travelled one to two days beforehand and would be at a track for 6 or more hours on this day.

Sunday (LONG RUN.)
10:00am-12/12:20pm- 20-23 miles to cap off a 100-120mi week. (in the fall we drive 20-30min out to the run, adding to the time this takes.  In the winter, this run is done in the snowstorms outside while you are lying down comfortably in your bed recovering from your frat party date rape drug hangover.)
Rest of day- fighting off post long run exhaustion sleep to do my very heavy homework load.

Sorry for the runners that had to read that, I permit you to just skip over that because it’s not anything new to you.  But Miss Renee, does that seem like a fair trade for some “free” sweatpants, shoes, and gear that isn’t given to us for the hell of it but instead so we don’t freeze to death while we are running in snow storms?

Ever had to repeatedly pull ice off of your eyelids for an hour so you can see during your run?

Ever had to repeatedly pull ice off of your eyelids for an hour so you can see during your run?

 

I’m actually LUCKY with my schedule, my coach allows me to miss practice for these classes. The majority of athletes have from 8am-2pm to sneak in ALL of their classes.  Friday classes, you can forget about that. I have to miss 1/4 of my Friday classes this semester and my professor already told me “it’s going to be very hard for you to pass” (to which I replied, in my mind, “Game On.”)  And for each time I have to miss class to go to a meet, do you think my professor gives me extra time to study for tests, to hand in homework later? NO. The OPPOSITE, actually.  Professors don’t bend over backwards for us, and actually many times you probably have the advantage in winning your professor’s approval over us.  We have to turn in our work EARLY more often than not, and have you ever taken a test while at a hotel with your athletic trainer sitting next to you in a room making sure you have no extra resources that aren’t allowed and that you get exactly the amount of time that the instructor has provided you with?  Let me tell you how awkward that is and just how “fun” and “easy” it is to focus when you’re taking a test in an eerily quiet hotel room the day before a major race.  No late night cramming the day before either, because you need your rest to run fast.

As for your comment about what if we were regular students- I think I would have a 4.0.  In fact, I have little doubt that I would.  I would literally have 20 or more hours given back to me every week and an unmeasurable amount of energy restored to my body and mind allowing me to perfect my studies.  In fact, with your schedule you have no excuse not to get the highest grade possible.  But that’s just me.  I have so many teammates, with schedules similar to or worse than mine, who very rarely if ever use tutors and maintain GPAs between 3 and 4.0 in difficult majors like Engineering and Pre-Med.  But yeah, they don’t deserve those grades because from time to time they see a tutor and they can show up to the tutor in a pair of sweats the university provided for them, right?

Oh, in case you were wondering, my GPA is above 3.0.  I have been a part of 8 Academic All-Big 10 Teams and have received several accolades for my academics.  What’s yours, hot shot?

By the way, what do you do on weekends?  Go out? Get drunk? Sleep in?  Howabout St Patty’s Day, Football Pre-games, “Thirsty Thursday”, Halloween, Your Birthday? Your friend’s Birthday?  Because WE don’t do that.  I can’t speak for every collegiate athlete on this, obviously, but since you made grossly over-generalized statements you’ve set the rules for this game, babe.  You know what a crazy Friday night is for me?  When I stay up past 11pm.  St Patty’s Day? I believe I did a 21mi run last year on that day and then spent most of the day sleeping the run off. Yeah, it can be a boring life, but there’s a thing called discipline you might not have ever heard of.

Muggle spring break.

Typical regular student spring break.

Actual picture from Ann Arbor Spring Break 2011

Actual picture from my Ann Arbor Spring Break 2011. Not allowed to leave campus, studying for exams as it snowed heavily outside.

 It would take me 18 years to discover coordination, stamina or anything that vaguely resembled athleticism. And it’s too bad, really — had I hit my fitness stride just a few years earlier, maybe I could be getting more out of this University. Because that is exactly what student athletes do.

This is the dumbest thing I’ve read all year, congratulations!  You think ANYBODY can do what we do?  You think I just happened to run one day and automatically was good enough to run for a Division 1 institution? This is a slap in the face to every one of us who have worked our ASSES off to get the incredible opportunity to MAYBE, just MAYBE, compete for a university should all of our hard work come to fruition.  If this was something everybody or anybody could do, EVERYBODY would be doing it. So shut your mouth, lady, because I’ve been running since I was 7 years old so I could have an opportunity like this.  My parents lived in a trailer park when I was born and although we’ve achieved middle class through my dad’s service to our country and my mom’s 20 years of teaching, I still don’t receive any aid in tuition from my parents.  I, like regular students, have over 50 thousand dollars in loans I will have to try and pay off some day.

“It’s no secret that it pays to play. Sports generate money, and every state in the Union knows Illinois is basically broke. But not everyone knows just how much is spent on sports and the student athletes who play them. Athletes at nearly all American colleges and universities get some sort of specialized physical, nutritional, psychological and academic accommodations. I understand the priority put on food, workouts and mental health, and there are services at the University that are of little to no cost that us mere-mortal, sport-challenged folk can go to for our own lifestyle concerns. But academically, student athletes here are blatantly getting a leg up on the competition.

At the Irwin Academic Center, student athletes have to log mandatory hours in either the study rooms or computer labs reserved specifically for them. It is the Salt Lake Temple of our supposedly “Inclusive Illinois” — these tutoring services and study spaces are for members only. Tell me again what’s wrong with the UGL? Or any of the other 20-some area studies libraries on campus? Several of my friends who happen to be student athletes are both highly intelligent and motivated — do they really need this service? Illinois athletics boasts that Irwin is “offering the very best in academic services to Illinois student-athletes.” So what does that leave for the rest of us? Are we not “striving for excellence” as well? If a non-student athlete had issues passing a class, few professors, instructors or TAs would take the initiative to seek me out for extra help. (I say few because I have had the privilege to meet some outstandingly passionate and dedicated educators who will all but bleed for their students to succeed, but I digress.) 

If a student athlete’s grades start to suffer, Illinois has it covered.  “

Sports are part of the reason institutions like yours can keep putting up new buildings on campus.  Whether you agree with it or not, sports are an incredibly important institution on big campuses.  Especially in the Big 10.

Another way we can tell you know nothing about our experience.  Do you know how much “mandatory study hours” SUCK?  I dare you to find a single athlete that likes those.  Being forced to study somewhere where the student may not even be comfortable studying? Those are the bane of our existence.  If you did your research, you’d know they usually only exist for struggling upperclassmen or freshmen.

Scumbag Renee.

Scumbag Renee.

” If a non-student athlete had issues passing a class, few professors, instructors or TAs would take the initiative to seek me out for extra help”
This line is pure bullshit.  Office Hours are available to ALL students and neither student-athlete nor n0n-athlete get any more hours than the other.  To be fair though, I wouldn’t seek you out either, because you seem like a shitty person.  But that’s just, like, my opinion, man.
” Of course every student athlete on this campus will have his or her own experiences with the system. I don’t blame anyone for trying to get the most out of a college education —”

Wait. You just discredited your whole argument.

Girl you are so dumb, furrrreaall

Girl you are so dumb, furrrreaall

“Is being just a student no longer enough? This argument was made long before my epiphany.”

This was your brilliant epiphany? Dayummm girl, with genius moments like this your next step is probably finding the cure for cancer!

Your Illinois education impresses me.

Your Illinois education impresses me.

 “Besides the money, the memories and the merchandise, the association says that student athletes are more likely to live longer due to healthier lifestyles developed through forced fitness. “

The NCAA- We FORCE you to LIVE LONGER.

The NCAA- We FORCE you to LIVE LONGER.

Leadership skills and discipline are almost a given on any team, but become a college athlete and you get to write those skills on your resume with the stamp of Illini approval.

Ok, f-ck you.  It’s getting really hard to remain civil.  LEADERSHIP SKILLS AND DISCIPLINE ARE NEVER a “given”.  Those are skills have to be LEARNED.  Just being an athlete doesn’t make one a good leader or disciplined, and there are plenty of things you can do for your resume that require LESS time than being an athlete that will be just as useful on your resume.  Btw, do you even know how hard it is to survive 4-5 years on a collegiate athletic team?  Do you think everybody gets to put this on their resume?  My recruiting class originally had 5 distance runners, there’s only 2 of us left.  The class below me has lost more than half of its original class due to poor grades, cuts, dropping out, and quitting.

I can run several miles today. But the time for scholarships and color-coordinated perks are behind me — so what’s the point? I’ll buy my own planner.

Once again proving you HAVE NO IDEA what we do. We don’t go out there and jog several miles.  It’s a f-cking lifestyle.  It’s a job. Work hours are 24/7, and guess what we’re not getting paid for this job.

So yeah, maybe we get a few things you don’t.  I’m sorry you have to buy your own damn planner.  We work too damn hard to put up with you and your high horse you ride on.  The truth, which you are terrified to admit, is that WE DESERVE THIS. 

Do you?

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Christmas Carols: EatRunSwag style.

25 Dec

Merry Christmas (Eve) y’all.  While in the Christmas spirit I decided to rip off write a few Christmas carols for the rare ERS blog post.  I’ll have some more up tomorrow, probably one revolving around our girl Suzy Favors for everybody Hamilton, and the like.

Look for the Best of/Worst of 2012 lists to come soon!

PS- if you wanna give me an xmas present, snapchat me at eatrunswag , I’m a snapchat fiend.

The Adidas Cadence just don't compare :( (Shoutout to whoever I stole this picture from.)

The Adidas Cadence just don’t compare 😦 (Shoutout to whoever I stole this picture from, Bailey.)

O Victories

O Victories! O Victories!
Thy Flywire is so amazing;
O Victories! O Victories!
Thy Flywire is so amazing;
Not only good for the 15,
But also good for sub 14.
O Victories! O Victories!
Thy Flywire is so amazing!

O Victories! O Victories!
Much pleasure thou can’st give me;
O Victories! O Victories!
Much pleasure thou can’st give me;
But unfortunately,
My school is not Nike,
O victories! O Victories!
Much pleasure thou cannot give me 😦

O victories! O Victories!
Sometimes I wish we were Nike.
Oh victories oh victories,
Sometimes I wish we were Nike.
I love Adidas trainers and shirts,
But hate their shorts that look like miniskirts,
Oh victories oh victories,
No spike can compare to thee.

WARNING: This next song is tasteless, offensive, and the typical satirical thing you’d find on this site. All you adults, Oregon fans, pre’s family members, and my typical hate mail senders should just skip this one.
This is wrong.. Wrong that I don't have photoshop and couldn't put a grandma in this pic :'(

This is wrong.. Wrong that I don’t have photoshop and couldn’t put a grandma in this pic 😥

Grandma Got Run Over By A Runner

Grandma got run over by a runner
Walking home from our house Christmas eve
You can say there’s no such thing as Pre’s ghost
But as for me and Grandpa, we believe

She’d been drinkin’ too much ‘egg nog’
And we’d begged her not to go
But she said the roads would be clear,
And stumbled out the door into the snow.

When they found her Christmas mornin’
At the scene of the crash,
There were Nike swooshes on her forehead
And incriminatin’ Green O’s on her back

Grandma got run over by a runner,
Drunk driving a gold MG Christmas eve,
You can say there’s no such thing as pre’s ghost,
But as for me and Grandpa, we believe

Now were all so proud of Grandpa
He’s been takin’ this so wonderfully,
See him in there watchin’ Bekele’s 5k,
Drinkin’ beer and playin’ cards with Kara G.

Grandma got run over by a runner
Who mowed her down with his car on Christmas eve,
You can say there’s no such thing as Pre’s ghost.
But as for me and Grandpa, we believe

I’ve warned all my friends and fellow runners,
Better watch out for your lives,
They should never give a license
To a man who drinks and drives.

Grandma got run over by a runner
Driving home from a party on Christmas eve,
You can say there’s no such thing as Pre’s ghost,
But as for me and Grandpa, we believe!

I wouldn't touch you with a 16foot pole vault pole!

I wouldn’t touch you with a 16foot pole vault pole!

Mrs Usatf ( you grinch!)

You’re a mean one, Mrs. USATF,
You really don’t treat your athletes right!
You take all of their profits,
So their wins are always really losses,
Mrs. USATF!
You’re a greasy slimy organization,
With plenty of misinformation,
You’re a monster, Mrs. USATF!

Christmas- Rupp Certified

Christmas- Rupp Certified

Ruppdolph the Face Masked Runner

RUPP-dolph the face masked runner,
Had a really sensitive nose,
And if you ever saw his skin tone,
You would even say it glows,

All of the other runners,
Used to laugh and call him names (like Peter Pan!)
They never let him join them,
In all the other runner games (like the beer mile)

Then one foggy August eve,
Salazar came to say,
Ruppdolf with your tactics so right,
Won’t you guide my Mo tonight,

Then how the runners loved him,
Even yours truly,
Ruppdolph the face masked runner,
Your 10k will go down in history.

Keep dreaming

Keep dreaming

A White Christmas Dream for Cam Levins (Give me a day off!)

I’m dreaming of a day off this Christmas,
My last day off was years ago,
30 miles run yesterday,
Calf muscles in constant pain,
Doubles and triples in the snow.

I’m dreaming of a day off on Christmas,
With every mile that I run,
May your days be merry and bright,
While you’re opening presents ill be trudging through the white

I’m dreaming of a day off this Christmas
190 miles a week is getting old,
May your days be merry and bright
While Im out here training in the cold 😦
Merry Christmas (Eve) !!

Ian Stewart and Stephanie Hightower: The most hated couple in Track and Field.

17 Jul

(I’m not sure how “slander” lawsuits work, so I think it’s necessary to point out any quotes in this post aren’t real)

Unless you’ve been without internet for the last week, undoubtably you’ve heard of the fiasco that occurred at the London Diamond League meeting this past weekend.

(Ironically none of the athletes can afford a diamond..)

In case you haven’t heard yet, both Lolo “Virgin Mary” Jones and Nick “One Night In Paris” Symmonds were barred from competing in the meet. The athletes were barred and told by meet director Ian “Suck-ass” Stewart that they were “a liability” and would not be allowed to participate in meets that he directed.
Wait, what?

Two Olympians and two of the most famous track and field athletes IN THE WORLD were too much of a liability to appear at a meet?
LOLO JONES a liability? The girl that won’t round past 3rd base? Afraid she’d give too many athletes/fans blue balls?

Blue. Balls.

Nick Symmonds a liability? Having an American try and chase good times and make a race intresting is too dangerous? Afraid he’d whip it out and slay Paris Hilton after the finish line?

A liability for being too…adorable?

In reality these athletes were not allowed to compete because of their views on how their advertising and sponsorship rights.

(Read this awesome blog on the situation:

http://tracksuperfan.com/symmonds-stewart-controversy    )

See Lolo and Nick have this “BATSHIT CRAZY” idea that they should be able to make at least as much money as an elementary school teacher. Ha, Greedy Bastards right???

As the article I posted states, 50 percent of the top American Track and Field athletes make more than 15,000 a year from the sport. Did you hear about that high schooler that was busted for a marijuana dealing ring in Ohio a few days ago? He was making 20 GRAND A MONTH. Or howabout Drew Brees signing a ONE HUNDRED MILLION DOLLAR five year contract this past weekend?

And Stewart is worried about these athletes making a few extra bucks with a Red Bull logo on their headband or a temporary tattoo on their shoulder?

He even looks like an asshole.

Now as if having one sport ruining meet official wasn’t bad enough, the man just happens to be married to the head dictator at USATF, Stephanie Hightower.

Stephanie was having mood problems due to “that time of the month” at the USATF Convention back in December and allegedly she threatened to castrate any athlete who dare to defy her shitty rules.

“Let them eat cake”- Stephanie Hightower

After doing minimal research, I’ve found out why Stephanie is such a terrible person. She’s a buckeye.  Figures.

I just threw up in my mouth.

Ian Stewart and Stephanie Hightower have become the most evil couple in sports.  I would call them the Bonnie and Clyde of Track, but Bonnie and Clyde actually had some style/swag.

Like Clyde, it seems Stewart is also whipped.

They are as out of touch with the US athletes as Mitt Romney is with the average American.

I’ve been honestly trying to comprehend why the two would be such dicks about the situation.  I mean, they’re head officials in track and field.  I love our sport to death, but damn these two have egos like they were head NFL/NBA mangers/officials.  Let’s be real, you’re not ever going to make 10 million a year being a major official/president in track, so give up this head trip or continue to ruin the image of track and field in the US.

ELECT SOMEBODY NEW IN 2012! SUPPORT THE MOVEMENT!

Next post on Thursday is a much happier interview with Olympian Emma Coburn!

PS- There are only about 8 t-shirts left on the webstore!! Link in the post below or the link on the right!

How to Creep Out Girls and Embarrass Yourself: A Re-Telling of an Unfortunate Event

19 Jun

Good news, my blog is officially a year old.  I just renewed it today,  over 200,000 views in the first year!!! And I started off getting about 30 views a day for the first month. So thanks for following my incredibly inconsistent posts y’all ❤

Anyway, I got the idea for my blog post today while eating lunch with Ryan Fenton and Alex Lohr.  NAAAAMMEEE DROPPPPP.
They are taking off to Eugene for the Trials soon and Ryan said “Zach, your girl is going to be out there!”.  I was like “Um. What?”.  I was thinking to myself “well, my girlfriend isn’t because she’s in Michigan.  Who is he talking about?”.  Then he told me to think about it for a while.  And then…Ding!  Emma Coburn.  Ryan has never let me live my “blooper” from my junior year down.

If you haven’t seen it, and this is your first time, well…you’re in for a treat.  Honestly I HATE watching this and it’s probably the most embarrassing thing I’ve done besides peeing my pants during a little league game back in 6th or 7th grade (any excuse to let me leave those boring ass games!).

As a preface to watching this, here is some info you should know:

Here is Emma, in case you know nothing about women’s track and field:

She’s good at sports.

and here is me:

I’m too sexy for my retainer, too sexy for my retainer, too sexy to keep both eyes open!

I had talked to Emma once before this, briefly, after the steeple about 2 weeks earlier at the Great Southwest Invitational.  After my race, I was in a kind of happy/dazed state where I just wanted to tell her good job and well, ya know, she’s a blonde and stuff, so I guess I stuck around a little longer than normal.  My dorky self didn’t realize there was a camera that I was standing directly in the frame of.  The rest is history…
(Idk how to embed, just click the link below, tell me if it doesn’t work.  Technology n00b here.)

http://www.flotrack.org/embed/ODc0MTA4MDIw?related=1http://www.flotrack.org/embed/ODc0MTA4MDIw?related=1<p><a href=”http://www.flotrack.org/video/108020-Best-Blooper-of-2008″>Watch more videos on Flotrack</a></p>

Seconds 1:38-1:48
Official tells me that it’s just about time for awards for my race and I should head over there (I won the weakest event at NON).

I never was a good listener.

1:50
I decide I’m gunna stick around and “get some water” first.

There was no turning back after this point.

1:50-2:13
I’m hanging out off camera, not ruining Emma’s interview. Good boy Zach!

WHY COULDN’T YOU JUST STAY THERE, DUDE??

2:14-2:16
WTF ARE YOU DOING ZACH???  This is where it starts. It only gets worse from here on out.

HOPE YA DIDN’T MISS ME WHILE I WAS GONE, BABY

2:30
I’m not sure if that’s steeple water, or ass sweat.  Either way it’s making an appearance in the video.

Yep. Def. Ass sweat

2:35
Dear lord. I’m wiping snot off my face with my elbow.  Somebody come tell me I’m in the way of this interview, please God!

Nah man fuck tissues. I gots elbows.

2:42
Notice how many sips I took of this small water cup.  Wanna know a secret? There wasn’t any water left in there.. Kill me now.

Sippin on some of that air.

2:47
As if I couldn’t do anything more embarrassing than stalk this poor girl and ruin her interview, I scratch my butt.

Yep, that’s the spot!

3:11
I give up, finally, maybe some other time.  One track mind, off to awards now, better hurry!

I’m just gunna pretend I wasn’t awkwardly creeping and go get my award meow

3:16
I start jogging. WHY, NOO WHYYY

3:19
You can hear a loud “bing” type noise.  The noise that is made when a spike collides with an inside rail and a dorky runner falls on his face on the infield.

The Grand…

FINALE.

3:20
Ryan starts laughing, knowing he got this whole thing on tape.

3:22
I walk off in shame as an official comes to try and help me.

It was painful reliving this.  I’d like to think I’m less awkward and dorky by now. Idk my girlfriend  and close friends might tell you otherwise.

But this is the 4 year anniversary, as Flotrack tweeted, of this monumental event in my life.  I think I can finally look back on it and say “wow, haha, what a dork I was! Glad I grew up!”

My sincerest apologies, Emma, if you ever were to read this, for any embarrassment I may have caused you.  Despite my actions in this video I am not a creepy stalker.  Good luck at the trials, we’re all hoping to see you kick some ass!  And maybe, one day, if you’ll forgive me, an interview for this blog would be great!

I have 40 shirts I need to sell and all I need to do is set up the online store.  More info on that in the next post.  Until next time…

Eat. Run. Swag.

The Real Maine Bros

21 May

Tonight at 6PM is the premier of the long awaited “The Real Maine”.  If you haven’t heard of it, where the hell have you been?
Here is the link to the site where the movie will be streaming, along with clips and info about all of the guys:
http://www.therealmainemovie.com/

swag

I’ve met most of these guys before and they’re real chill, which is one of the reasons I’m so excited something like this was made.  I think Erik sums it up best when he said ”  It’s one thing to see Kiprop run 3:30, but when you see someone who’s relevant to you run well it raises the level of expectation. It’s like, I know what he does, how he trains, how he lives. If he can do it why can’t I?”.  This is a regular, albeit talented, group of guys who are extremely dedicated to what they do.  They are REAL runners.

Here’s a quick last minute series of interviews I put together with some of the guys. Thanks so much dudes, we will continue to enjoy watching you kick ass this year.

Mark Feigen:

Feigen or Gerard Butler?

 

How did Kyle approach you about this trip to Maine? Were you pretty much on board right away?

Kyle asked me what my plans were for the summer and I told him that I didn’t have any. He said he had been talking to Riley and Erik about getting together for the summer and asked if I would be interested in joining them. It seemed like it probably wouldn’t happen but since I had no other options I said I was in.

When I’m home in the summer in Texas I get to run with a lot of runners from different teams such as Texas, Tulsa, and Arizona. Getting to run with people from different programs is one of my favorite things to do since it’s a nice little refresher from the normal school-season training and it allows me to learn about a lot of different point of views on training. What did you learn from this group of guys that helped with your running (philosophies/training aspects)?

Getting to run with guys from different schools and areas is definitely one of my favorite things too. Training and talking with Riley and Erik showed me that there are a lot of different ways to accomplish the same goals. Erik has probably run twice as many miles as Riley since being in college but somehow they have very similar PR’s. Different styles work for different people but as long as you believe in your own training you have a good chance to be successful.

Sharing running philosophies. Or discussing peeing in public

I know some people who have headed out to New Mexico for the summer to train and I’ll be doing a stint in Colorado, do you think the change of location helps focus on the training while keeping things interesting, and what would you tell somebody who is still on the fence about doing something like this?

Getting out of the usual training environment and into something different is a good way to keep training from getting stale. When i’m in the city I do the same runs all of the time and taking a break from that for portions of the year is fun and makes me excited to get back to school in the fall when the season starts up again.

Avoid this cabin in the woods though, unless you have Bruce Campbell with you (Anyone know this reference?)

How many runs did you drop Merber on?

We probably only dropped kyle on a few runs but he definitely complained about us going too fast pretty often. Riley loves to one-step.

Love.

Kyle Merber:

g2g4gold

When we hung out in Ann Arbor last year, I believe you were only running about 2 to 3 miles a day. In case there are readers who don’t know, tell about what your setback was and how you overcame it to have such a successful year:

In August of 2010 I stepped on a piece of glass while on a training run. It pierced my trainer and tore my flexor tendon. I was out for 7 months and my entire junior year. It took two bouts of PRP to help me overcome the tear. This was a tough time in my life, and Erik does a great job of doing that struggle justice in the film. There was a large chunk of time when I became quite depressed because the future of my career was in question. But one day I will look back and view this as the turning point for me. The reason I was enthusiastic to be a part of the film is I wanted to give credence to those who are injured and say that it gets better. Once you encounter a serious injury, it becomes part of who you are as a runner. And that’s a powerful vendetta.

All of you have had some pretty impressive successes this season, most recently your 3:35 comes to mind. Do you attribute some of this year’s successes to the time spent out in Maine? 

I don’t necessarily point to Maine as the reason for any of our success. However, I think that anyone who shows a willingness to dedicate oneself to training will experience improvements. We weren’t the only group of college kids to have a training camp in the summer, we just did it with a film major. I definitely think getting a great base in is essential for any runner, and we all walked away with some new found strength. That probably could have been accomplished in most US states, and probably even parts of Canada, but we had a lot of fun in the process.

Most flattering pic I could find from the meet

Related to the last question, what do you think is the biggest thing you learned/took from The Real Maine Experience?

The biggest take away I left Maine with is that there is an infinite number of ways to train. Over the course of the summer, we had plenty of talks about workouts and training plans. Every one of our coaches brought something different to the table, but all produce results. The main objective in training is to find a way to stress the body, and then recover so you come back stronger. The variables employed to accomplish that goal will vary greatly.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN??

This is less of a question and more of a request, I think you should grow just a ‘stache for track natties, how do you feel about that?

Request: Denied. I am a light beard kind of guy.

P.S–I stand by “easy days easy.”
Riley Masters:

Wrigley Field Riley

What is one thing you learned about each guy there while in Maine?

Mark and Erik always have something witty and funny to say. There aren’t a lot of serious conversations that go on around them. Mark is the kind of guy who will call you out on anything, he keep you on your toes. Erik is the guy in the group who finds a few good one liners and uses them obsessively in every situation. Chris is a super competitive kid. Whether he is racing, playing wiffleball or horse shoes he is GOING TO WIN! Kyle is the kind of guy you go to if you need advice; but regardless of the problem you go to him with, he’ll give you some kind of antidote about his injury or winning millrose. In all seriousness, they were a great group of guys to spend the summer time with. All of them are extremely hard working with very big aspirations. I learned a lot from all of them.

words of wisdom from the Millrose Champ

When asking Erik about the funniest thing/story of the trip he told me to ask you about that one, is it a story you’d like to tell?

The story Erik is referring to involves a minor procedure I had when I was a freshman in high school. I would love to share it with everyone, but I am not sure I could do it justice with out telling it in person. The content of the story is jaw dropping but my timing and delivery is what makes it great!

All of you “Real Maine” guys are having great seasons, which is great because to the viewers it helps validate everything that you guys say in the movie. Looking back at your college career so far, what kind of advice would you give to the graduating high school seniors who will be going into their first semester of college next fall to achieve the levels of success that you, Erik, Chris, Kyle, and Mark have?

The advice I would give to young runners is to be patient. Running isn’t something that comes to you overnight. Sometimes it takes a while for all of your training to pay off, but if your patient and stick with it then eventually you will see the benefits and rewards of all that hard work.

Hard work is paying off, 3:37 is blazing.

Erik van Ingen:

swag.

I read in a previous interview that the idea stemmed from Quentin Cassidy’s escape to the cabin in the novel Once a Runner. This has actually been something that I, and I’m sure many other runners, have dreamed of since reading that fantastic book. To all of us who have had this in the back of our heads but have never acted upon it, would you recommend it and what words of advice do you have in terms of finding a place and a group of people to do it with?

I would definitely recommend it. It was a fun summer, the best of my life. My advice is keep it basic, real cheap. To quote fight club, “It’s only when we have lost everything that we are free to do anything”. As far as a group, chemistry is key. The dynamics of how each person interacts within the group is priority. We knew that going into the summer and stayed true to that.

Running to him was real..

Here’s where I try and ask some questions that haven’t been asked yet.

This film is your final project/thesis type film, correct? Who do you consider some of your artistic influences and who is your favorite director?

Yeah, this project was my senior thesis ,after the fact though. I had another project lined up, but bailed it for this. TRM was too good of an opportunity to pass up. I look for artistic inspiration in a lot of different places. I think that’s how an artist is pieced together is being influenced by so many things that you can sift through the good and bad and create a style that reflects you. I really admire well rounded artists. Mos Def comes to mind for me. He’s one of the most influential hip hop artists of our time, he performs on broadway, he’s been on screen with some of Hollywood’s biggest actors. I also like figures that transcend genre, like what the Fugees have done with their live performances. I think being able to combine multiple influences to create a unique sound is brilliant. I’m using hip hop as an example mostly because that’s something that I hold close to me in terms of a personal interest, but I feel that I can still pull ideas from other forms of art and have them compliment whatever it is that I’m working on. As far as a favorite director, I’m a huge Derren Aronovsky fan. His aesthetics are so dark and gritty. The struggle and internal conflicts that his films deal with are something that have always resonated with me. I can’t relate to wrestling or dealing heroine, but the ideas that are conveyed by the subject matter is something that I can relate with.

Yo it’s 6 Million Ways to Die, from the seven deadly thrills,
Eight-year olds gettin found with 9 mill’s

I don’t think many people realize how good of a skier you were (I assume you still are). Do you still hit the rails in the winter?

Skiing, that was my first love. It will always have a spot in my heart. Unfortunately this was the first year in my life that I didn’t ski. I see skiing as a detractor from my training. It’s a very tiring sport as is running. Pounding out a run in the morning then spending the day at the hill is a bit too much for my body. At this point, my eggs are all in the running basket so I’m fine with it. I’ll always have skiing when I decide to hang up the spikes.


Did Kyle get dropped on every run you did?
Kyle got dropped many a time, he also did some dropping. Contrary to popular belief he’s not a big pussy.

Did y’all have workouts to do while out there and if so did everybody do their own separate workouts or were there times when y’all did them together?

We were all on different schedules. Mark and Kyle had similar workouts being that they have the same coach. Riley’s training was flexible so at times he would hop in with them. As for me, I was getting back into things after a long outdoor season so I was just getting in some miles. We had some days where we had to do our own thing, but for the most part we all ran together.

Bros before hoes

Tell me about your decision to release this online for free to the public:

As for releasing it online for all to see. I want this to be something that others can appreciate. Everyone is going to pull something different from it. For some it will be a different perspective, others might be motivated. Whatever it is, I want a lot of people to see it and I want a lot of people to pull something positive from it that they can apply to their own running. Making it to view for free is only going to heighten the exposure. I’m young with very few expenses. I figure I have plenty of time to make money in the future. Right now it’s about fine tuning my skill set and promoting what I do.

We appreciate the hours of work you put into this

One of the most intriguing things about this film to me is that it’s by runners that people like me can actually relate to. From the clips so far it looks “real”, that’s the best way I can describe it. It’s not a Saint Ralph, but rather a down to Earth group of guys who are willing to do whatever it takes to reach their goals in the sport. What do you hope viewers take away from the film?

That was one of the biggest things I was going for, was making something real, something relatable. We are college kids working our asses off to be the people that we want to be. Almost every runner our age can relate to that manifestation of self. I think a great example is Kyle running 3:35. That came out of nowhere. We were texting the other day and he said the first thing he thought when I ran 3:38 was “shit, I need to get to sleep so I can get on my horse”. It’s one thing to see Kiprop run 3:30, but when you see someone who’s relevant to you run well it raises the level of expectation. It’s like, I know what he does, how he trains, how he lives. If he can do it why can’t I?

No guts, no glory

In retrospect, what do you think is the most important thing you got out of this trip? Sorry that’s kind of broad. 

This trip was the first time that I could just relax. I can get super tightly wound. I was able to just get away, do something new, and have fun. I had a purpose, but no outside stress. We were a bunch of kids out running on some dirt roads, nothing more, nothing less. As a filmmaker I have grown a lot in the past year because of this film. I learn very well in a hands on environment. There’s no better way to learn about making a movie than to actually make a movie. For the group as a whole, I think there’s this bond that we hold. We’re not teammates and we sure as hell aren’t doing each other any favors when it’s race time. A bystander wouldn’t notice, but we can look each other in the eye and know that there’s something there. We are the real Maine.

Michigan Vs. Ohio State: THE DUAL 2012.

14 Jan

Luke Skywalker vs. Darth Vader, Rocky vs. Apollo Creed, and Rick Perry vs. Homosexuals are all big rivalries.  But NONE OF THESE even hold a candle to Michigan vs. Ohio State.

 

HISTORY OF THE RIVALRY:

THE MICHIGAN-OHIO WAR-

When Michigan applied for statehood in the 1830’s, confusion over the boundaries of the two states lead to a dispute of a 468 square mile region along the border of the two states known as the “Toledo Strip”.

"The Toledo Strip", it now exists as a janky stripclub

 

Militias from Michigan and Ohio assembled near the Maumee River in Toledo but nobody actually fought because the Buckeyes traded all their weapons for tattoos and alcohol (probably Mike’s Hard Lemonade) on their way to the battle and the Michiganders decided it wouldn’t be a fair fight.

Pokerface Fail

 

Eventually Congress offered Michigan the Upper Peninsula in exchange for Ohio getting to keep Toledo.

What Michigan got: The Upper Peninsula

Pure Michigan

 

What Ohio got to keep: Toledo

Daily occurrence in Toledo.

 

Ever since then, an intense rivalry has existed between the two states and has manifested itself in the football games between the University of Michigan and The Ohio State College.

Tomorrow evening, starting at 6pm, is the annual indoor track dual meet between Michigan and OSU.

Left Side, Strong Side

 

This is the 27th annual dual meet with the first meet taking place in the 30’s with some non-dual years thrown in between then and now.  While Michigan has won 20 of the 26 meetings, the Buckeyes have won the last 3 and the Wolverines are looking to put an end to this streak just as we did in football this year.

Schedule of Events
Field Events
6 p.m. – Weight Throw, Pole Vault, High Jump, Long Jump
7:15 p.m. – Shot Put, Triple Jump
Running Events
7 p.m. – Mile
7:10 p.m. – 60m Hurdles
7:20 p.m. – 400m
7:30 p.m. – 600m
7:40 p.m. – 60m
7:50 p.m. – 800m
8 p.m. – 200m (two sections)
8:10 p.m. – 3,000m
8:25 p.m. – 4 x 400m Relay

 

I was going to do an event by event preview, but I actually have to get some work done so I don’t have to do anything tomorrow.  But, briefly, just know that it’s going to be very close.  OSU boasts some of the best field event competitors in the Big 10 while Michigan fields a still fairly young, but already well accomplished group of athletes.

Heat Sheets can be found here:

http://grfx.cstv.com/photos/schools/mich/sports/m-track/auto_pdf/2011-12/misc_non_event/tfm-heatsheet-011212.pdf

Yours truly will be debuting my indoor season in the 3k. It’s been a long 95 mile week but I’m quite fit for early January and ready to rip.

Fun-Spirited rivalry jokes aside, all of us Wolverines are excited to get to compete against our Big 10 Rivals tomorrow and see where we’re at fitness-wise at the beginning of a long season.  We extend the best of luck to all competitors tomorrow, as long as our luck is much better.

Not known by many, but D-Rob actually won a race in the Dual 2 years ago

 

Look for Michigan to give a strong showing in the Hurdles

 

This is Michigan...FOR GOD SAKES

 

 

Shout out to everybody running in the Trials tomorrow! Especially my coach’s wife Kathy Newberry!

 

 

 

The Man, The Myth, The Legend: DEREK RUBIS.

15 Sep

I am probably just going to stop apologizing for long distances between posts.  School started, my schedule has been crazy y’all.

ANYWAY.

If you are a fan of running, then you’ve probably heard of Derek Rubis.  If you’ve never heard of him well then I can only think of two reasons why,
1.) You’re probably not fast enough to have the honor of being Rubisized (Most of us aren’t, it’s ok)
2.) You live under a rock.

For both those who know of the man and those who don’t, here’s an opportunity to learn a little more about him.  He’s without a doubt the biggest track and field fan in the US of A.  This guy loves track more than Snooki loves alcohol. And that’s saying a lot.

BADASS MOHAWK, BRO

Fans like this are vital to our sport.  Now some may think it’s weird to be so obsessed with this sport, and may find the “Face in Hole” pictures to be a little odd as well.  Well, “Haters Gone Hate”.  The act of getting a “Face in Hole” picture has become an official verb in our running world, getting “Rubisized”.  It’s usually quite an honor to make this list as it signifies that you are an elite runner. Scrubs don’t make this list (Although I admit my finally making it was due to my interviewing him 🙂 )   Little note- this is not intended to be sarcastic or poking fun at anybody, this is a real interview with a pretty big figure in the track world.  Thanks for letting me do this interview Derek I appreciate it!

Derek Rubis + Zach Ornelas = Derek Ornelas. RUBISIZED

 

 

So tell me, Derek, how did you get into running? Did it start when you were young? How long have you been running and following the sport?

I got into the sport cause I couldn’t do contact sports and I started in the 6th grade for the 6th grade run. I have been running for about 20 years from 6th grade to now and I really started following the sport when I was a freshman in high school.

I think more than a few of us started this sport due to the inability to play contact sports man, we feel ya.

 

Sick Nike Kit, Derek.

Why do you love running? A lot of non-runners look at our sport and think we are crazy, what is it that gives you such passion for our sport?

I love distance running cause it a sport that not a of people can do and not a lot people follow. My passion for this sport is cause we are an underdog sport that is trying to make a name for itself

Damn Derek, you've been hitting the weights recently huh?

What are your current PR’s and do you have any PR goals for this upcoming year?
3K-11:45, 5K-19:30, 8K (XC)-34:00, 10K-42:20. My PR goals for the upcoming year is just better my prs in XC and when track comes I want to get in between 40-41 minutes for the 10K.

 

Wisconsin's Finest.

Who is your favorite professional or collegiate runner and why?
In the Professional Distance World I have two Chris Solinsky & Nick Willis cause of dedication and hard work to this sport. For Collegiate Runners I have three and they are all on the same college team Maverick Darling, Reed Connor & Drew Shields for dedication, hard work & they care about their team as a whole and they care about their sport.

Derek Rubis pick/pic of the year, Wisco takes the crown

Now here’s the important part, not too many xc predictions have been made online yet, what do you think the top 5 teams will be for NCAA Division 1 cross country this year?

Wisconsin, Stanford, Oregon, Indiana, & Oklahoma State.

You heard it here first, folks.  Wisconsin ftw?

Derek picks Derrick.

Who do you think the individual champion will be?

 

I think the individual champion will be Chris Derrick with Drew Shields, Maverick Darling & Reed Connor in the top 4.

If your prediction is correct, Wisco will score a scary, scary low score at nats..

D-Rube rolls deep.

Would you like to give any shout outs to good friends or some of your homeboys in Wisconsin?

 

I would like to give a shout out to Chris Derrick, J.T. Sullivan, Dylan Ferris who I call the Stanford Three & to Maverick Darling, Drew Shields, Reed Connor & Mike Brice who I call the Wisconsin Four.

Until Next Time, EATRUNSWAG.