Monday, February 8, 2010

Congratulations to Gary Orr!

Hey Everyone and welcome to another update to the San Diego BMW Motorcycles blog. Today we're congratulating Gary Orr on completing his first ever marathon in 4 hours, 28 minutes, 8 seconds. This all started just over a year ago when Gary went on his weight loss mission and dropped 75lbs. Stew King and Todd Hockensmith, our resident Iron Man, Triathalon and Century runners (yes that means a 100 mile trail run) started after Gary about running a marathon. Gary refused time and time again until finally, in August of last year we all threw in 10 bucks and entered the bossman in the Huntington Beach "Surf City" marathon. The final selling point on his participation was that Rob Danner, Todd Hockensmith, Stew King and Myself would pace and encourage him on the final 13.1 miles.

The old man set a blistering pace the first half of the run and rounded the halfway point in just over 2 hours. This is where we met up with our fearless leader, still in good spirits, stepping it out toward the finish line. From 13.1 to mile marker 16 laughing and joking abounded! We had a raw nipple situation arise that required Teddy to sprint ahead a mile and score some vaseline. Chaffing handled we pressed on. At mile 18 Gary mentioned some discomfort and numbing in his left foot at his 2nd toe. Quick stop and removed his shoe confirmed there was some swelling but no popped blisters or bruising. Shoe back on, quick hit of water and we were underway again.

Now, the 4 minions (Tedd, Stew, Rob and I) have run several marathons. We're all pretty familiar with the "mile 19 wall" that a runner hits. EVERYONE hits said wall and the success of your run depends on how you handle it. I believe in the existence of 3 possibilities:

1 - You impact the mile 19 wall with the grace of a Pontiac Fiero, smash the front clip clear into the rear axle, call the wrecker and leave the race at the local junk yard.

2 - At mile 19 you convince your self that you can walk 1/4 of every other mile and not loose too much time. This in fact will add at least 1 hour to your overall and is considered an epic fail.

3 - A few of your friends climb the wall, anchor down, toss over a rope and drag your ass kicking and screaming over the top and along the last 7.2 in a respectable amount of time!

We chose option three. At mile 19 the pace slowed dramatically and the bossman was running out of steam. The 4:10 pacer passed us and the 4:20 pacer was rapidly approaching. We hit the next fuel table and forced Gary to chuck 2 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, a Cliff bar, cup of gatorade and a cookie and started off again. A few mentions of "How the $@*& did I let you &*#@'s talk me into this?" in between dry heaves but otherwise he was a trooper. Finally, after passing mile 22 the calories found their way into his system and he was back in the zone. Todd and Stew at the front of our formation yelling back words of encouragement, Gary a few paces behind them putting 2 thumbs way up in the air and Me bringing up the rear yelling "grind it out!" periodically. Mile 23, 24 and finally 25 took us right through downtown Huntington Beach and thousands of people had gathered to watch the runners enter the final 1.2 mile stretch. Left, right, left, right, left, right, to the country sounds of his ipod as Gary entered the final mile long, taped off corridor to the finish line. Todd, Stew and I had to duck out and let the boss handle the final half mile on his own. We sprinted along the boardwalk toward finishers corral just in time to see Gary get his award for completion and throw his head back in relief. Exhausted, sore and limping slightly he proclaimed: "This is my LAST marathon ever! Where did you clowns park the car?"

So that's our story and unless North County BMW Motorcycles excepts our challenge to run the San Diego Rock and Roll Marathon on June 6th man for man I'm not sure we'll be seeing our fearless leader hammering out another 26.2 miles in the NEAR future. And yes that's me calling out the "other guys" in front of everyone reading. Loser buy the other shop pizza and beer! Bring it!

Thanks for reading
-Sean DeAngelis

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