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PROTRACK » GENERAL » The A to Z of ProRunning - something to ponder....

The A to Z of ProRunning - something to ponder....

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Wrote this on the weekend when I was watching the footy...just a bit of humour to start the season & keep the forum ticking over.

A to Z of Pro Running

A is for Arselicking which is what the inferior coaches and athletes need to become very good at in order to successfully negotiate with the handicapper for an inflated mark.

is for Blocks that expensive piece of hardware that dizzy runners do not have to purchase which justifies why meet organisers offer less prizemoney for middle distance events.

C is for Coach, a much maligned creature who if he aint very good, needs to develop very good ’A’ skills.

D is for Dizzy runners. – the middle distance athletes who run around and around until someone rings a cowbell  to tell them there’s only one lap to go. If the bell fails to ring, they just continue to get dizzy, ultimately pass out & resuscitated in time for the next one.

E is for Even Time  - an old school method of determining an athlete’s net worth. Even time is 10sec for the 100 yards or for a 120m Gift it is 13.124secs. An Inside evens (better than 10.94s for the 100m)  athlete is the benchmark of quality and is automatically excused from running anything that does not require blocks. An outside evens (slower than 10.94s) athlete must run 400’s – the price one pays for being slower than acceptable. Athletes who can run telephone numbers inside evens (eg: Cappo, Brimma & the Boss) are the equivalent of the Willy Wonka gold ticket.  

F is for the Fat to Fit program that is the hallmark of a lot of repeat Gift winners and can produce great riches if you are patient and are willing to have no pride for a few years.

G is for Grass which most tracks are prepared upon. These can be a bowling green where all levels compete, particularly athletes blessed with an abundance of Quick units; or a cow paddock that mainly attract the crap runners looking for a tick.

H is for Handicapper who is a godlike figure that you pray and give thanks to when you’ve won a race. Generally considered a traditional enemy of the pro runner with no natural predator. A 10% loading is included in any penalty when an athlete fails to publicly thank the handicapper after a win. If you are struggling to get on the podium it might be time for some serious ‘A’.

I is for Intelligence which is the number one attribute to be a handicapper. You need to have more of it than the athletes/coaches or as a handicapper you’re cactus.

J is for Jumper , a species of athlete who in another life runs 30m before filling their undies with sand. When they hit the Gift circuit they appear scintillating for the first 60m of a Gift, but inevitably hit a wall & feel like they're carrying a piano for the second 60m.  A Jumper can also be an item of clothing one puts on when it’s cold. Especially at a Scottish Highland Gathering where it can often become quite "Piccadilly". Relief awaits when one gets a tartan jumper.

K is for Kitbag which an athlete carries their gear in. Important to leave it in the hallway when an athlete returns from a meet so mum & dad can learn to look in front of them when they walk. The Kitbag is Mum’s responsibility to check for soiled clothes. If mum fails in her duty, the kitbag may carry some items such as odd socks from the first meet until the last, six months later. The smell of a kitbag at the end of a season has been cultivated to knockout elephants.

L is for Lanerope which, starting from left to right, is what separates the good runners from the crap ones.

M is for Meterologist – someone who is expert in the statistical analysis of metres per second and the specific number of metres required to be successful. A very good meteorologist is rare, so beware of imposters.

N is for Novice which is what a loser is before he becomes a winner. Important to lose one’s novice status before the age of 30 as the stigma remains forever.

O is for Open events which is what junior athletes start running in as young as possible so they can get a good mark before puberty and by the time they’re old enough to drink they have a bucket load of prizemoney to get pissed on.

P is for Penalty which is your ‘reward’ from the handicapper for winning so you don’t do it the next time. If an athlete does not know the penalty for winning an event beforehand then the terrorists win.  

Q is for Quick. The more ‘quick units’ an individual is blessed with, invariably means the more ground one has to cover, unless one is adept at disguising one’s quick units. In contrast, the less quick units one has, the less ground they need to cover of the advertised  race distance to win. Disguising quick units is the premise for much of the angst between handicappers and athletes.

R is for Red colour which signifies the backmarker, the fastest athlete in the field. It is not uncommon, in fact it is expected of athletes who regularly wear inferior colours such pink and brown, to be extremely envious of the athlete in red to the point they have a secret basement with the red athlete’s photos on the wall.

S is for Sash that you must wear to bed for a week when you take ownership of one for the first time. If you are in a relationship with a partner, it’s the only thing you wear to bed until the partnership dissolves.

T is for Time which can be multifaceted. The time you record when you have concluded an event or the time your race is scheduled according to the program. It’s important the athlete takes note of the scheduled time to ensure they are ready to compete. And it’s particularly important to note the time of the veterans’ events to plan food, toilet and social interaction breaks.

U is for Underage races a breeding program recently introduced to enable the long term viability of that species of athlete known as the pro runner whose numbers were considered endangered until the intervention of people a lot smarter than those who went before them.  

V is for Vested Interest and Venues. Vested Interests are vitally important to ensure the health and wellbeing and long term future of pro running. The sport revolves around a culture of vested interests. The more vested interests there are protecting Venues, the less likelihood of them being turned into polo fields and detention centres.

W is for the Wind Gauge of which the best in the world is proudly owned by the VAL. Considered the eighth wonder of the world, the IAAF head honchos scratch their collective heads  as to why they can’t invent one as effective as the VAL’s. The VAL’s wind gauge is so accurate it was borrowed by Ben Lexcon to develop the winged keel that won Australia the America’s Cup in 1983. Bette Midler finally admitted last year, her hit song Wind Beneath My Wings was inspired by the VAL Wind Gauge. It’s reported Professor Julius Sumner Miller’s last words were “The VAL Wind Gauge – Why is it so.”

X is for the X factor unknown athlete that can run like the clappers but have no exposed form that coaches seek out like a prospector looking for gold. When you find one within the X factor – its best to shut the hell up.

Y is for Yoyo form of athletes that compels a handicapper to flip his lid & tear his hair out. Handicappers hate athletes who’s form is up and down like a fricken Yoyo.

Z is for Zigzag  - a kamikaze method of running quarter miles available to predominantly skinny athletes who dart in and out of trouble during the event, made famous by a fellow named Brian Marantelli in the 1980’s.  Very few hefty runners can master the art of the zigzag.

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