Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Famous Lies told to Runners (at a race)

Over the years I've heard some whoppers from aid station crews, course officials, race directors, and people on the sidelines of a race. Disclaimer: I love race directors and volunteers; (I've been both), so don't flame me for this post! These are just observations of mine, from the point of view of a race participant.

Here are Some Famous Lies told to Runners:

"The finish line is just ahead." - (No way...don't be duped, Gomer).

"The aid station is just ahead." - (the aid station crew hasn't even set up yet, or it's over 5 miles away).

"Trust me ... this is the last hill." - Translation: 4 more hills.

"It's all downhill from here." "You're almost there." - Translation: 5 more hills.

"Another 100 yards, around the corner, and you are finished...you can turn on the speed, now." - (There's always 1/2 mile to go when they say this).

"You're looking really strong." - (You look like a stumbling, self-flagellating drunk).

"You're looking good, keep it up." - (You look like total dog shit and not even your own spouse would be able to recognize you, at this point.)

"You are breathing great...you're in a groove." - (You're practically asthmatic, you're caked with dried salt, your face is an almost purple-red, you are slobbering, and you're bleeding from 6 spots on your body when they say this).

"That guy is in your age group! Go get 'em." - (He's actually 10 years younger/older than you, so don't worry your tiny, mileage-addled brain).

Heard from the finish line of a 10K: "if you can hear my voice, you can still break 40 minutes." - (No frigging way, with just 10 seconds left...don't be a fool, yet again).

"Just an easy 5K to go!" - (usually said by some numb-nuts-non-runner with a bull horn at about Mile 21 of a marathon).

Heard before trail ultra-distance races (many, many times): "The course is well marked..you can't get lost." - (This is always a total fabrication; you'll be lost for at least an hour).

Said (incorrectly) at the mile 53 aid station in my last 100-mile trail run: "This container has water, that one has Heed in it...let me fill your water bottle for you." - I almost threw up when I drank it, because Heed was now mixed with my sports drink.

...And the biggest whopper that I've ever heard: "Just 1.5 more miles and one major hill to go." - Said at the last aid station at the Superior Trail 50 in 2004...there were actually 3 major hills and 7 miles left to go in a 50-mile race that turned out to be 57 miles long! (We were warned at the start of the race that the new, 2004 course might be slightly long-ish). I still had fun, though, (even though the finish line was not marked and I was lost for 30 minutes trying to find the damn thing).

Please share other race lies that you've heard!


olga said...

This is bringing the tears of joy to my eyes!!! Aww, thank you, Ben! Now I want to go and hear it myself:) My pacer, who is local to SF, told me at Miwok - this is last hill, only 5 min - when I had another hour and half to go! Luckily, he stayed behind, and I was too tired to kill him.
How about - it's all downhill at WS100 after Foresthill - sheesh, do they know the difference between down and up? Or at Wasatch some hiker told me and my friend (running together) that we had a mile left - and it lasted the whole 4! I love those stories, mine or anybody's:)

Tammy said...

Heard from spectator at mile 80 of my first century bike ride (actual ride distance 108 miles), "You're almost there!!!"

Response (under my breath of course): screw. you.

Rae said...

That is so funny!! And so incredibly true. The one I get most often (besides the ones you mentioned) is: "Oh, we're all out of Small shirts. But this XL will shrink."

Uh, yeah.

angie's pink fuzzy said...

I love it!!!

I don't have any race lies, but I do have "Johnny Mileage" - he runs so much faster than me, he's often wrong on the distance/hills of a given route. He'll tell me it's flat and short, when it's steep and long. Okay, moderate and moderate, but still.

Susan said...

I hate the "This is the last hill" line!!! Because I always believe it!