I don't really know what "bravo zulu" means. I think it means "congratulations". In this context, it risks being an icky self-congratulations -- quite self-indulgent. But I worked the military lingo "bravo zulu" into my title in honour of the Army Run 1/2 marathon, which was my final Four Seasons event for 2012.
This is my second Army Run and, boy, has it turned into a major production. I chose it as my final race for obvious reasons -- after all, I am fundraising for a scholarship for a Canadian Forces veteran. But that aside, it is a run with real (excuse the second bit of military lingo) esprit de corps. The Governor General's foot guard marching band, a cannon start and an army general to congratulate finishers. It also features a wounded soldier run -- quite inspiring. You always find a little bit of breath somewhere to cheer them on as you run your own race.
For my part, I had a good day -- not my best day. But a better day than I deserved given how little structured training I have done since the Ironman. (I usually have what I call a Sportstat performance bump -- I race better than my training suggests I should when wearing a chip that will result in my times forever being recorded on sportstats.ca. I think that might actually be diagnosed by some as an ego problem).
Most importantly, the Army Run constituted a culmination to my rather nutty Four Seasons schedule.
Looking back on the season since I began this venture in November 2011, I have been awfully privileged and lucky -- privileged to be in position to do all this and lucky that I didn't get injured, sick (well, except here and there) or burned out. With the exception of Boston, I was fortunate to have good racing weather -- in all seasons. I didn't cramp up (Boston excepted), flat or drown. I did bonk in the Loppet, but on the downhill stretch. Lucky again.
On such things we measure ourselves.
Going forward, I will fundraise earnestly for the next six weeks -- there is still time to donate! And this is the point where I may prove very annoying to friends, relatives and colleagues. But to remind you of why I'm doing this: see here. And since I like to think my money is situated in the same place as my words, my family and I are making our own final, $500 donation to the fund today. We are lucky again to be in a position to do this, and are very happy to do so. (I measure these things with an eye to the ridiculous cost of the cable TV I don't watch -- charitable donations look like a bargain in comparison).
After that, the executive committee of the Canadian Council on International Law shall take stock and strike a committee to elicit and evaluate scholarship applications. And then we will award a scholarship to a deserving Canadian Forces veteran with an interest in international humanitarian law and entering a Canadian law school in 2013.
Between then and now, I will post my Four Seasons "by numbers" and reflect on a year of moving vigorously as a wrap up on this year's campaign.
Thanks again for your support and for reading.