Monday, March 16, 2009



Then again, it is much more in character for me to tell you about something embarrassing that has happened to me, as opposed to what I have been doing lately (bragging and boasting and the like).

I believe in my last post I mentioned that you should always try new things - and with an asterisk, reminded you that in doing so you should at least be smart about it. For example, I tried a new thing by running a half-marathon this year. BUT - I was smart about it, and used a 12-week training program that I followed TO THE LETTER. NOT being smart about it would have been waking up one random day with no preparation whatsoever and saying "What the hell, I think I am going to try to run 13 miles today." Note the difference, it is important to the story that follows.

During my twelve weeks of training, I received lots and lots of advice, much of it unsolicited. But what the hell, it was my first half-marathon, and so I listened to most of what people told me because I didn't know what I was in for yet. One common theme that seemed to come up over and over and over again was "have you tried the goo?"


What the fuck is Goo?

And why is everyone asking me about it?

Finally, about a week before race day someone brought it up to me again. "In your long training runs, do you use the goo?" This was someone with a couple of Boston Marathons under his belt.

"Explain to me about this goo, please." And he went on to tell me that it is like an energy food. You squeeze some into your mouth and eat it, and it gives you strength and energy to keep on going. "It really works well," is something I heard over and over. And I was advised that most likely, this is something that would be available along the course, much like water and sports drink stops.

Okay...with me so far?

Fast-forward to about 8:00AM on race morning. I was about halfway through the course, and feeling great. I had just exited the Magic Kingdom and stopped between mile 6 and 7 to get my picture taken with Goofy:

Just beyond the Goofy photo-op was a water station, sport drink station, and a table where volunteers were squirting this goo-like product onto popsicle sticks and handing them out to runners. Cool, I thought to myself. What a good point to try this goo out, at the halfway mark.

I finished my water, and my sports drink, and jogged off to the side of the road to the goo table. The volunteer handed me a popsicle stick covered with this gelatinous substance and with the friendliest of smiles said "here you go, dear!"

"Thanks!" I said with an equally friendly smile, and I put the entire wad of stuff in my mouth. which point the entire table of volunteers began to scream. "no no NO! You don't EAT THAT!!!!" Because in fact what I had just put in my mouth was something called "Biofreeze."


BIOFREEZE® products with ILEX

BIOFREEZE products are a unique, effective pain reliever formulated to provide a variety of benefits for therapy, pain relief, exercise/training and overall comfort.

BIOFREEZE products contain ILEX, an herbal extract from a South American holly shrub. ILEX is used around the world in various health & wellness formulations. BIOFREEZE topical analgesic does not use waxes, oils, aloe or petroleum. The result is a fast-acting, penetrating, long lasting pain reliever.

BIOFREEZE products can effectively help relieve pain from:
• Sore Muscles & Muscle Sprains
• Back, Shoulder, Neck Pain
• Arthritis
• Painful Ankle, Knee, Hip & Elbow Joints
• Muscular Strains

Use BIOFREEZE products to relieve pain prior to:
• Ultrasound Treatments
• Massage Therapy
• Soft Tissue Trigger Point Therapy
• Rehabilitation Exercises
• Pre and Post Workout Stretch


Yeah, so I spent from approximately mile 6.5 to mile 8 spitting...and spitting and spitting and spitting. From the second that I had put the gel in my mouth, it went completely numb. My breath was icy cold; my teeth felt frozen, like I had just eaten an entire brick of ice. And oh, was my mouth dry. I could do nothing but spit over and over, trying to get the taste and the numbness away, but my mouth was so completely dry at this point that I was spitting out nothing but air. If you could have only seen me, I was spitting and then absolutely laughing at the absurdity of the situation. I would have paid someone $500.00 at that point for a cup of water. In fact, I am pretty sure I clocked my fastest pace during that stretch because I was JUST TRYING TO GET TO THE NEXT WATER STATION!

At mile 8, the water was my salvation, and I quickly gargled and spit the first cup before actually drinking the second cup. And as I slowly began to regain feeling in my mouth, not unlike novacaine wearing off after a dental visit, I just shook my head at my utter stupidity.


Clearly, no harm done. I was fine and I finished the race and in fact, felt terrific at the end of the course. And by that point I was so caught up in the emotion of the event that the incident was (sort of) forgotten.

But please, just let my story be a warning that while trying new things is a great idea, KNOW what you are doing beforehand. Look before you leap. Be prepared.

Otherwise you'll end up being like me - a total ASSHOLE!