Inspired by oor @ironpugsley’s blog : Scenes From A Swimming Pool, my in-built awareness of choppers was heightened this weekend. And Lochore 10k didn’t disappoint!
Picture the scene: a cold, crisp October morning. A misty loch footpath. A 10k with a low limit to participants. 150 max.
As we warm up by the loch, I spot the first of many choppers.
Let me clarify the term “chopper”: I define a chopper as someone who takes themselves, and chosen sport, a little *too* seriously.
Now. I’m not saying that you shouldn’t take your chosen sport seriously, and preparation for any distance and any event is always essential… But this is a 10k. With a water station. Are nutrition packs, with two full bottles in the belt, gels AND a 750ml hand-held bottle necessary? All that weight must be a challenge to carry. I don’t think I even drank that much on the bike leg at Aberfeldy… On a 10k it is a bit excessive.
It gets worse.
As we lined up on the start line (footpath) I was nudged by my other half. He whispered “camelback to your right”.
Surely fucking not.
Well. It wasn’t just *any* camelback. No. No dear readers, it was a Herbalife camelback. She was getting beaten no matter what…
I started to panic that I’d missed a memo. Was this some kind of endurance race? Was I about to run a great deal further than planned? A quick look at the other 80 people sans 15 litres of fluid attached to them and I was reassured.
The race started and I very quickly overtook Mrs Herbalife. “Good”, I thought. “One down.”
Mr Nutrition Pack was running a similar pace to me, so I was treated to the overspill of music from his Yurbuds AND the sloshing of all of his bottles of juice. I was also privy to his breathing.
Brian perfectly summarised it after watching/hearing him cross the line. “He sounded like someone was kicking a horse”
You may think I’m being harsh, here. But 57 minutes of sloshing, faint dance music and sniffing, coughing and spluttering is enough to fill anyone with the kind of rage that Spurs one on to a 3 minute PB…
Oh! And the PB! I should mention that. Did I mention that? I must thank Mr Nutrition Pack for being so unbearable to run near. Because without his spluttering and sloshing and throat-clearing I’d probably not have been able to keep as fast a pace for as long.
I do love Choppers. There is nothing like some top quality entertainment and a reminder of when I used to adorn myself with every conceivable thing to improve performance. Turns out it’s just hard work and determination that helps there!
‘Mon the Choppers!