Wednesday, April 11, 2012

RobbieD in Rotterdam!

Thanks RobbieD for that poignant recap of my life. Despite some minor details (a tear drop? Common!) it is - sadly - quite accurate. I have been sucked into a vortex of science (see! Now my metaphors are even scientific!). In the past some people have confused me working at MaRS with me being on planet Mars; now I don't bother correcting them. I have essentially been swallowed by an alternate universe. I just hope that I don't get usurped by a black hole and vanish eternally.

That being said, I am somewhat aware of the occurences happening in the outside world. First of all, it is April! Thanks, anonymous poster, for reminding me of the changing months. Living on Mars I am frequently not aware of this subjective thing called 'time.' Second, it is racing season! It's a good thing my co-worker is a triathlete gearing up for Goodlife, otherwise the world of shin pounding may have entirely escaped me!

Thus, I am also aware (perhaps also due to Le Rob periodically invading Mars to make sure I haven't died along with my mice) that Rotterdam is fast approaching. There is nothing I am more excited for, though given my current thresholds of excitement perhaps this isn't saying much. Yesterday I jumped for joy after getting my pipettes calibrated. Last week the highlight of my week was inventing a new science pun*, which was promptly shut down by my labmate Korris. I protested that I'd test out my awesome new joke at lab meeting, where I would SURELY receive a 'Korris' of laughter.
(I think at that point he put his head down and walked away. Or hit me, I can't quite remember...)

Anyway, I digress, how very non-linear and unnerd-like of me! Getting back to Rotterdam - since Le Rob did you all a favour by sharing a flattering recap of my life as of late, I will return the favour and recap why Le Rob will make a great marathoner - this weekend and beyond.

Most of you know Rob through le Blog. You think you know him pretty well eh? Well I can assure you, internet Rob and real Rob are quite different. Actually that's a lie, they are pretty much the same. But there are some important things about Le Rob that the casual le Blog du Rob reader won't fully appreciate.

In his blog, Le Rob comes off as joking, light-hearted and positive, yet sometimes aggressive, wreckless and crude. (Ok, forget the 'sometimes' on that latter statement. After all, his blog WAS voted 18A by Canadian Running.) Although most of these traits are true to Rob, there is much more depth to him than you would think. I know, hard to believe, right? But it is these extra facets of his personality that truly give him an edge. Those who doubt what Le Rob can (and will) do, don't know the real Rob.

First of all, he is a smart guy. Yep, I know you are all saying 'No way!!!" but it is true! He may spit out spelling mistakes and incorrect grammar on a regular basis, fail to divide his posts into organized paragraphs and write in brain-joggling run-on sentences, but he's got some smarts nonetheless. (I am pretty sure my last sentence was a run-on anyway, it happens to the best of us ;). Heck sometimes he is just completely incoherent, but that is probably because he is drunk. Rob won't deny that the dumbest things he does usually stem while being severely intoxicated. So providing he does not replace his morning beet juice with beer, he's good to go!

Getting back to my main point, Rob knows what's up. He keeps his goals in mind and takes steps every day to make sure he will achieve them. That starts from his daily runs and workouts to proper nutrition, strength work, rest and mental prep. To elaborate on the latter point, Rob is a master of adopting the right attitude. He knows that positive thoughts will bring positive results, so he works hard to keep that mindset. Sometimes he says such ridiculous things that I mistake his positive mindset for extreme childlike naivety (keep in mind, I have a mildly cynical personality). It could be blizzarding and slizzarding out and instead of complaining, he'll stress how WELL this was going to prepare him for the marathon! 'If I can run 50k in this,' he'd bubble, 'I am going to smash this marathon! Let's get 'er goin'!' Anything negative that happens, you can count on RobbieD to focus on the positive.

He is also pretty astute with his recovery. I know, after watching the pitiful recovery video he posted in NC you might think otherwise. 'Does recovery mean drinking a lot of beer and eating a lot of cookies?' one might ask. Well, believe it or not, this is a very small component of his recovery routine. I would actually call the beer his reward system and his recovery just another part of his training grind. Foam rolling, plantar digging, icing, re-fuelling, sleeping - he'll give his body what it needs. Though I am a terrible judge of sleeping habits. But he does sleep a lot more than me, so that has to count for something?

Second, he works freakishly hard. We all know RobbieD is talented, but not everyone knows how hard he works. There is pretty much nothing that can get in the way of him getting his training in. And I have probably tested him in every way. Get him really drunk? Nope, 'running is the best hangover cure!' he'll chirp. Schedule something between the hours of 6AM-1PM? Nope, he'll wake up at 4:30AM and get at least one of his training sessions in. I am pretty sure if you stole all of his running gear from him he would do his long run in jeans and bare feet (I was going to say dress shoes, but he would never wear dress shoes. Ever.) What's more, is that he knows how to make it hurt (twss). That's fundamentally why I think he will be a successful marathoner. Rob can grind through anything, he grinds until he convinces himself he likes the grind and it's no longer a grind. So when the grind hits everyone at 30k, Rob's legs will finally start to feel comfortable, and he'll kill it.

Finally, le Rob may never admit this to his internet friends, but he has a huge heart. This is not just beneficial for efficiently pumping blood to all of his working muscles, though it does help him run faster in that regard. His big heart is evident by how much he cares for and how well he treats people that matter to him. And one of the things dearest to his heart is running. This gives him a motivation that's deeper than talent, commitment and enjoyment of the sport. He loves running to the very core of his being. It is so clear to anyone that knows him that that is deep down why he runs. He'd be out there grinding out daily runs even if he were hammering 5:00/km repeats, because he loves it.

There is a famous quote that says to run a great marathon, you must 'Run the first part with your head, the second with your legs, and the third with your heart.' If that's the case, my friends, le Rob is ready to dominate.

Go get 'em RobbieD!

*Ooooh you want to know my science pun! It is truly great. Essentially I am looking for an interaction between two proteins, PP2A and ERK. I have done some preliminary experiments that suggest that they do in fact interact, but the main experiment remains to be completed. After discussing these exciting lead-up studies with my co-worker, I exclaimed 'Wow! If this next experiment doesn't work, I will be so ERKed!' [enter cackles of laughter here]. I know, brilliant, right?!

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Blog #68

Hey there, so if you’re like me then you are probably wondering what the heck is going on here at the Coolis blog, why has this sucker not been updated in so long? What’s the deal? What‘s going on with our favourite Canadian Female Runner/Blogger!? Well folks I hate to break it to you, but Jane is dead...haha, just kidding, she’s alive, just busy as hell that’s all. She simply does not have the time nor the energy to blog right now. This will happen, shit gets pretty stressful and hectic when you are trying to finish up a PhD in Medical Biophysics (yeah, that is a real thing I swear).

I (rob) on the other hand have too much time and too much energy. Therefore I am gonna write a blog here for the Coolis. Gonna give ya a quick update on what is going on in the life of Coolis...well actually I don’t know exactly what is going on with her. I have only briefly spoken to the Coolis, so I have a basic outline at best, I’ll make up the rest as we go. Okay let’s get at it.

We’ll start with an update on Jane’s shin. Her shin is annoying and stupid, it is slowly and surly getting better, that’s good. But it’s still kind of a sensitive topic, we’re not gonna talk about it right now. The lack of running has really opened up some free time in Jane’s schedule, what is she suppose to do at 5am now that she can’t run? Well Jane has taken to dominating the weight room. She has been throwing the iron around like a gosh darn maniac. She is getting huge! Home girl can legit lift 100lbs right over her head, it’s insane! She’s an animal! Jane has really gotten into the whole meathead, weight lifting scene, she even started doing mixed martial arts. She’s pretty good too. Jane had her first official MMA fight the other day, it was awesome, she punched the other girl right in the face and then tapped her out with a perfectly executed guillotine choke, quite impressive. Do not mess with the Coolis.

Jane is not just about weight lifting and physical violence, she’s also quite smart. Let’s do a quick update on her schooling. Jane is killing it with her school stuff. She is a top notch researcher and scientist. I’ve seen her in action it’s quite cool. Well, except for when she has to do experiments on mice, that shit is disgusting and disturbing. First she gives a mouse cancer for a while then she kills it. It is unnerving, but I guess it is necessary. It’s not like she’s testing chemicals on the mice for Proctor&Gamble or anything. This is for science! We’re trying to cure cancer here! I have looked over her research and notes and such. It’s very solid stuff, and if I do say so myself, I’m pretty sure that she is well on her way to finding a cure, I’m saying like 5years tops until Jane has taken care of it. My girl is wicked smart (read that last line like this) School however is very time consuming and stressful sometimes, so let’s move on.

Jane got a haircut. It’s kinda short. The front part is shorter than the back part, It’s still blond and she keeps it pretty straight. Looks good I’d say. She probably paid like $400 on it though, chicks are always paying ridiculous amounts of money on their hair. Girls are weird about their hair. Jane also might get a tattoo, she’s been thinking about it a lot. She’s narrowed it down to either a tribal arm band or a tear drop. Either way, she is gonna get inked up. It will add to her street cred, her MMA friends will surly approve.

Adding some more badassness to Jane’s recent activities is that she went to a sweet rock and roll show the other day. Jane generally does not like music with guitars. She prefers music made by computers and robots. But she was forced to listen to a whole lotta Chuck Ragan there for a bit and she developed a soft spot for the guy. Chuck happened to be in town and she agreed to go to the show. I had gone to a computer themed music show with her, so she owed me. Jane brought along Tim and Mauricio. They are also big fans of computer music, they are also Jane’s best buds. The three of em’ make up a pretty solid/intimidating posse. Jane’s other friend Noah also came. Noah actually likes guitars, apparently he can shred on one pretty good. Noah is a good dude, but he had to leave early to conduct an experiment. Yeah, Noah left a Chuck Ragan show early for the sake of science. He just got his PhD though, so I guess that will happen sometimes...Nerd.

Tim and Mauricio, cool dudes.

Dr. Noah. Yep...nerd.

So speaking of nerds, let’s not forget folks, Jane is a big science nerd. Don’t be fooled by the blond hair, pretty face and outgoing personality. She is a huge nerd. She will straight up do science until she passes out. It is crazy, she loves that shit. Big nerd, yep, that’s Jane.

Anyways, the guitar music show was at Lee’s Palace. Jane tried to order a Martini, it was a hilarious failure. The bartender just looked at her and told her she was at the “wrong place for that” then walked away. She settled for cheap vodka on the rocks. She didn’t seem to mind. Jane had a lot of fun at the Chuck Ragan show it was wicked. She has a new appreciation for guitars and she now has a soft spot for fiddlers.
Since the show Jane has gotten back into her 19hr work days and has not been heard from since. She actually might be dead for real this time. I hope she is not dead. But if she is I guess I’ll see ya’ll at the funeral. We’ll pour a Vodka Martini with extra olives on the curb in honor of our fallen friend.