PAX: Friday, Pediasure, Gusher, Squirt, Prosciutto, Jorts, Yellow 5, Burrito (RESPECT), Recycle, Hambone
Frigid, even by the standards of a brutally cold January. The breeze was piercing, especially up on the track where one is exposed from all sides. Definitely not a day to start slow!
I tried to start us off quickly with some high-intensity exercises. The sometimes helpful, always vocal Burrito was anxious to get to the game, and understandably so. However, the nature of the game dictated an intense warmup. Side-straddle hops were on the menu, as were Marine Corps pushups and some LBCs to get us down and out of the wind. We did a long run around the high school to get our lungs ready as well. On the climb up the Apex, I went over the rules. Now, explaining even something as simple as a track game to this crew is like explaining multivariable calculus to a first grader. Try doing it while Bernie’ing uphill with lips numbed by the 25-degree weather. Yikes!
There are two teams in the game. The teams start at opposite ends of the track. Their starting points are their respective “zones.” Team 1 stays on one half of the track, and Team 2 stays on the opposite half. The stated goal of the game is to get all of the cones from the other team’s zone into your zone. The real goal of the game is to stay warm and get a good run day workout in. Each runner can only carry one cone at a time. A runner can hand his cone to a runner without a cone. If a runner does 40 Big-Boy Sit-ups in his starting zone, he may bring two cones back to his starting zone one time. If a runner sees that there are no cones remaining in the other team’s zone, that runner should hold low plank until more cones are dropped off. If a team has no cones in the other team’s zone, and no one the team is carrying cones, then that team WINS. The prize is a FREE personal pan pizza from Pizza Hut*.
*At participating locations. Dine-in only**
** No locations are participating at this time
I read an excerpt from the memoirs of a 20th-century Romanian, who talked about how the joys of comradeship through shared struggle are grander than any material things. I would give up or forego many things before I would give up the opportunity to be out there in the mornings with this fine group of men.
No one loves overthinking things more than Burrito, and my bonus goal of driving him crazy with strategizing worked a charm. While the other team was walking to their zone, he immediately started making plans. His strategy consisted mainly of handing off cones. Meanwhile, Team 2 quickly figured out that there was an advantage in the two-cone provision, and started the game off with Big Boys. In the end, neither team won (though Team 2 was clearly winning), and both teams got in a great run day while staying warm.