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Bridges Runner

Definition of a slowpoke?

Definition of a slowpoke?

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Two part entry here which lead hand in hand.  First, Sunday I headed up to Riverbank with AB to get a good hardy track workout of 400m repeats before the Fifth Avenue Mile this Saturday.  After the third 400, the skies decided to open up and absolutely DUMP sheets of rain on us as we ran.  It was pretty fun actually as I thought to myself, what a fantastic way to spend my Sunday evening! LOL.  I ended up maintaining a 1:29-1:34 pace the entire time (even with the rain and hefty crosswinds...oh and random children running in the middle of  my workout of course!).  We shall see what happens Saturday but I have a few numbers in mind...and with the weather predictions...it should make for excellent racing, throat burning conditions. Weeeeeee!

As for part two, it has to do with the article posted to Slate earlier this week.  After reading this, I just was left well...speechless!  I just find it so hard to believe that there are still people that bitter and feel that running is only meant for a select few.  Actually, I think that is one of the huge benefits of this sport.  It is one of the only ones where you can start on the same playing field as the best in the world.  Where else can an athlete say that?  With the way our country has weight problems, I hardly think telling people they can't do marathons because they don't make the grade is the solution.  Perhaps he should consider taking up ultramarathons or something to fill that void.  I hear the Badwater race is for the hardcore...ha!  In addition, turns out his marathon PR, would not be enough to make the Boston 'A' list back in the days he speaks of....hmm..

This made me think about my situation as a relative newbie to the sport.  I started running seriously 2 1/2 years ago because of the marathon..  There I said it.  I watched my mom and dad complete countless marathons and thought...hmm I haven't given myself a serious challenge yet.  So 2003, I started working out on a regular basis before finally joining NYRR and the racing scene in early 2004.  My first 5k race came in over 9 minutes a mile and I couldn't have been prouder...heck, I just wanted to finish under 30 minutes!  In March I found a similar female looking to get into the NYC Marathon as well.  As luck would have it, we both won the lottery and trained for the marathon together that summer.  After running the marathon, she ended up getting pregnant so I was at a loss and definitely did not want to ruin the base I started.  From there, that's where TRD came in...and the friendships...and the speed...and well my life in NY.  Well, good thing I took this path because honestly...without it...I have my doubts I would still be in NY... 

Each one of us has a right to run the marathon and to run in general. Mr. Sherman's generalizations are so out of touch that it just is so hard to comprehend.  I actually asked my dad about it this weekend since his best days of running were in the time period given in that article.  My dad pretty much said it couldn't be more farfetched. I have the utmost respect for the elite but everyone that gets to the startline had to do something to be there...whether you run sub 5 minute pace or 10+ minute pace (or in my case somewhere in between!). 

  • I agree completely-it can take a 5 hour marathoner just as much training, effort and heart as a 3 hour marathoner can. It doesn't make someone less of a runner/athlete because they are not genetically programmed to run 6 minute miles.

    However-this may sound a little harsh, what I don't like seeing in this sport is people who really don't "respect the distance." Who want to just run a marathon because it's the trendy thing to do and really don't put the effort into training for it. Why do I think that? It's situations like this why you see groups of people cutting a course to beat a cutoff time (as was shown at last year's Marine Corps Marathon.) Or even worse...could lead to injury and burnout very early on...it'd be a shame for someone to really not get the full benefit of how much fun running and smart training can be.

    (And of course I have my own issues with the fact that the marathon has gotten so overhyped these days, that shorter distances are pretty much not even acknowledged...but I think I said enough on that issue at one point in time :) )
    • Your second point is completely valid as well. I don't disagree that there are people on the other end that don't do everything it takes to be at that startline (I was very upset to learn about the MCM thing last year especially since I ran it!). However, I'm not speaking for them...I'm speaking for a vast majority that do work hard and reap the many benefits the sport of running delivers. Running, while a tremendous group activity, is an individual sport in the end and each runner decides what he/she wants to accomplish.

      Yes, the marathon can be overhyped but I think your point about the shorter races is a great example of how the running community appreciates things beyond running 26.2 miles. Just look at this Saturday....I'm going for glory in a race that takes less time than a walk to the subway! :-)
      • oh I know who you were talking about-and believe me, i do agree with you on that point :) was just venting my own thoughts on the topic. seemed as good a place as any :)

        (and i actually do hope that my saturday hangover won't be so bad that I can actually watch...but something tells me I will be sleeping til noon!)
        • yep, whole point of blogs...to vent and vent some more;-)

          oh and keep this in mind...I had a terrible hangover the day before Club Champs '05 and ended up with a PR:-p so...
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