What the hell is wrong with some people? Have they all been watching Balboa? Or is it something akin to road rage that I have been faced with recently, on my jogs along the delightful riverside from Vauxhall to Waterloo Bridge and back?
My run was going rather well, I was pacing myself just enough to look good whilst maintaining a respectable speed. I crossed over Vauxhall Bridge and briefly stopped at the traffic lights as cars were still passing by. A foreign chap and his girl asked me for directions to Kennington/Oval, so I tried my best to point him in the right direction, whilst being aware that any major delay to my run at that stage would result in rapid cooling and cramp. Pointing in the vague direction of Kennington, I myself continued running over the road before the lights could change red again. I was in no particular hurry, I just eased myself into a comfortable pace that would get me home before I got too cold and tired. Before I knew it I was closing in on another runner, a rather short heavy set male who was ambling along with a rucksack hanging off his back. I took the racing line as it was obvious that I was going to pass him in the next 7 seconds, which I figured would be all that was needed – no acceleration, no showing off, just me continuing my natural course of progress.
And then it happened (again). The little toad sensed that I was closing in on his shanks, so he started accelerating. I’d seen this before, and figured I only needed to pick up my pace a little bit to put him off his course of action. Oh no, not a chance. I accelerated, and he accelerated. I then had to go up 2 gears to pass him, and when reasonably he should have given up, incredibly, I sensed that the little bugger was going to try to sprint past me (or into me). The unmistakeable sound of his rucksacks bouncing got more agitated. I had to sprint to get away from this madman, there was no way I could let him near me. He could be dangerous, there could be an ugly attempt to shunt each other off the pavement into the road or the Sainsburys car park. But worst of all, he was a squat little bastard that really had no place trying to outrun the Finn. So I ran pretty fast (considering I had already been running at a fair pace for 40 min’s), for at least 30 seconds to a minute, until gradually the rustle of his rucksack and the plod of his footfall began fading into the far distance. I should have given him the one finger salute, but I think at the time I really didn’t know what manner of foe I was up against. Suffice to say that as I embarked on my hyper space escape, I was smiling to myself as I knew that the enraged runner had been left behind. Eat my dust you nerd!
So what’s it all about? This same thing happened to me last week, although I was not feeling fit that time, and after out-accelarating the other runner, I eventually had to stop since I had exhausted myself. Why are these people trying to ruin what for me is just a great way to beat stress and enjoy the incredible vista that the Southbank offers? We’re not in an actual competitive event. I run at a fairly consistent pace and certainly don’t set out to overtake people.
I suppose you might point out that I could just let it go, and ignore the challenge posed by a random runner. But how can I, since I’m the one that was naturally running faster?
I suppose I’m a competitive c**t too then.