Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Substantive Contributions and Information Gleaned

Sitting on a telecon to which I have no substantive contribution and relatively limited information to be gleaned, my odd and seemingly irrational inclination to take part in an activity such as distance running is somehow validated.  (emphasis on the "somehow")

I suppose that the argument could be made that the very activity of running is such that provides no substantive contribution and (in and of itself) has relatively limited information to be gleaned.

I would disagree,  but am happy to entertain a substantive argument against me; however I suspect that any such argument would provide relatively limited information to be gleaned.
The best of both worlds?

Saturday, June 23, 2012


I was somewhat at a loss last night when asked a seemingly straightforward question:  How do you feel after a 100-miler?

Being posed by a rather accomplished runner (i.e., went to high school in Oregon, made it to Footlocker Nationals in XC, and broke one of the H.S. track records formerly held by a Mr. Steve P.), I figured he was looking for a more substantial answer than I can typically posit for a non-runner or a rather ambivalent runner simply giving half-hearted fancy to the idea of a 100.  I couldn't simply talk about a "feeling of accomplishment" or "how trashed my body was," nor could I talk about the "mix" of the two that so often accompanies such a tale.  These cunningly ephemeral and ambiguous ways of relating an event would not do it justice. This guy wanted a legitimate description.

I didn't know how to give one.

Still don't.

I've run a few hundreds, and I remember in rather vivid detail what they were like, but describing the feeling at the finish is beyond me.

How would you further, perhaps more accurately and precisely describe that finish line feeling?

Inquiring minds want to know...

Perhaps a decent illustration of this feeling... (?)

Friday, June 15, 2012

What Are They Thinking?

I wonder what goes through the mind of a (non-runner) driver passing by a runner strung out from miles and miles and miles.

I suppose it is highly dependent upon the driver, given the varying reactions I've noticed, ranging from the asinine cat-calls to the little old lady who, although she has seen you, refuses to look at you while gripping the steering wheel, staring straight ahead, unwilling to yield even an inch of her road.

The one driver's perspective upon which I can draw is, obviously enough, my own, but I think that mine, along with most of ours as a running community, is somewhat skewed.

More often than not, I find myself a bit jealous of the fatigued runner, wistful of the satisfaction found in exertion while simultaneously waxing nostalgic over runs of days and years past.

Occasionally, if the effort, form, and overall countenance of the runner look sufficiently strained, I'll feel a momentary twinge of pity, which is ironic given that, even at my worst moments, I still (possibly errantly, if not conceitedly) considered myself and my plight above the pity of motorists passing by.

But the question remains, regardless of the reaction of a given driver, what are the first opinionated observations and subsequent thoughts of a driver unacquainted with the nuances of our addiction?

Saturday, June 9, 2012

To Race or Not To Race...

It's the time of year that I find myself looking for yet another event upon which to focus.  For one reason or another, summer tends to bring about the most consistent training of the year for me, so it's always nice to have a race, run, or other event to hold my attention, which is, admittedly, not easily done.

At the moment, three ideas are emerging as front-runners; these are, in no particular order, the Arkansas Traveller 100, a run across Mississippi (E-W, likely Hwy 82 from Columbus to Greenville, somewhere around 180-190 miles), or a flat-out and fast marathon (e.g., Rocket City, Chicago, etc.).

Truth be told, this list can and probably will change, possibly drastically, but on the off chance that anyone actually reads this and feels the urge to respond, I was interested on the running community's thoughts on these three, pros/cons, as well as what some of your late-year race/event plans are as additional possibilities.

All that so say that for my own benefit, with regard to planning some goal event, I'm open to suggestions, and I have a sneaking suspicion that others are as well.