On I went, out of the wood, passing the man leading without knowing I was going to do so. Flip-flap, flip-flap, jog-trot, jog-trot, curnchslap-crunchslap, across the middle of a broad field again, rhythmically running in my greyhound effortless fashion, knowing I had won the race though it wasn't half over, won it if I wanted it, could go on for ten or fifteen or twenty miles if I had to and drop dead at the finish of it, which would be the same, in the end, as living an honest life like the governor wanted me to. -Alan Sillitoe, "Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner"

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

You know who you are.

I've received an uptick in hits to my blog lately from people googling either "Galen Rupp shirtless" or "Nick Symmonds shirtless" or other variations on a theme ("galen rupp douche," "ryan hall naked").

To you, I ask: why? I mean, I get that the Olympic Trials are going on and these names are getting more press than usual. But... do you really want to see them shirtless?

The ears. The running tights. The intense look. The lack of a face mask. This is not a man I'd want to see shirtless. But, to each his own.

I'm not going to bring back the classic photo of Ryan Hall naked - we've all been visually scarred by that enough.

Let's just appreciate these men for their skills on the track and not try to turn them into eye candy.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

At least I can still lay on the couch and eat ice cream

Yesterday I spent largely in my pyjamas. By the afternoon when I wasn't feeling any better, I dragged myself (sans bra, sans showering) to urgent care where I was told that I did not have strep throat, despite my throat being bright red with white spots. And extremely painful. Worse? I can't talk. I can sort of croak, but it's barely audible. And did I mention it hurts? Kind of all over. I can't swallow but I also have dull body aches.

In other words: I haven't run and I'm cranky.

Which is why I'm going to vent about a pet peeve that I've seen in some running blogs lately: apologizing for your "low mileage." Comments like, "I know that my 75 mile weeks aren't much compared to good runners," or "I only run 50 miles per week and I know that many of you run much more than that," or "Some of you might laugh when I say that my 90 mile weeks are a lot."*

Stop it, okay? We're all different. We all peak at different levels - some of us get injured at 35mpw, some of us can run 150 and be fine. We all have different schedules - some work full time and juggle parenthood, some have loads of time, some prioritize drinking with our friends over running. And it's all okay. No need to justify why your mileage isn't high enough (especially if it's a humble brag). 

Running is awesome in that you get out of it what you put into it. For most people, experimenting around with different levels of mileage and different forms of cross-training produces different results, and a little bit of experience can make you fairly good at predicting what you'll get out of what you are putting in.

In the immortal words of Jersey Shore, "you do you." I mean, if Lauren Fleshman make the finals for the Olympic Trials at the 5,000 meters while training 10 miles per week, can't we just acknowledge that everyone is different?

Related: I have a new training plan. I'm modeling myself off of Lauren Fleshman. Anyone have an Elliptigo I can rent or borrow?

*I've seen this mostly in the blogs I read that are written by women. It's interesting to me that a few blogs that are written by men seem to have an opposite situation: instead of apologizing for what they didn't do, they rejoice in what they did. Planned to do a 20m long run and only ran 6? Awesome! 6 miles in the bank! (That sort of thing.)

Monday, June 25, 2012


Lots of news out of Eugene this weekend. For instance, there was a dead heat in the women's 100m for third place. Like, exactly a tie. Like, Allyson Felix and Jeneba Tarmoh both ran the exact same time (to the thousandth of a second) and now get to choose between a coin toss and a run-off.

There are very specific instructions for the coin toss:

...each athlete shall face each other and the USATF representative shall bend his or her index finger at a 90 degree angle to his or her thumb, allowing the coin to rest on his or her thumb. In one single action, the USATF representative shall toss the coin into the air, allowing the coin to fall to the ground.

That's only a small part of the instructions. They're worth a read. Frankly, I don't really get the 100m race. I mean, how do you show off your endurance in a race that lasts less than 12 seconds?

But because I am self centered, the real running news in my world isn't the Olympic Trials, but the fact that I have a bad, bad cold. I'm basically living out the movie Contagion. Still, jet lag forced me up at a rather obscene hour yesterday morning and I headed to Brooklyn to meet Emilie (read her take on the whole phenomenon of "chicking" - I agree completely).

It was a crappy run, frankly. My right leg was unusually tight with some pain behind my knee and I couldn't get into a groove of any sort. It wasn't until I got back to Emilie's apartment that I figured out why:

Notice anything? That's what happens when you get dressed in the dark: a brand new Brooks Ravenna 3 (drop: 10mm) on my right foot, and a well loved Saucony Omni (drop: 12mm) on my left. So basically I'm like the princess and the pea and I notice even a 2mm difference in my legs.

In a final bit of (quite outdated) running news, remember when Jedward bandited the LA Marathon? Of course you're all huge fans of the Irish identical twins, right? No? But you must love their hit "Lipstick," right? And their hair?

Fine. Maybe I just wanted an excuse to embed the video of my latest obsession:

Friday, June 22, 2012

This just in...

Adding to my summer to-do list: run a hella lot.

Have a good weekend!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A few things...

Number one:
Sage Canaday, my biggest running crush since Frank Shorter, won the Mt. Washington Road Race this past weekend.

That's right: my favorite elite runner won my favorite road race.
And, for our viewing pleasure, he did it shirtless.

Let's recycle an old photo of me while we're at it:

Sage, if you're reading this? Email me.

Number two:
How is "BodyGlide WarmFX" not a personal lubricant?

Number three:
I ran on the treadmill twice while I was away on vacation. I consider that both a) pathetic, and b) a small victory.

If I had to run on a treadmill every day, I would probably take up cycling. Or even ellipictalling. (See how contrived the elliptical is? Not only does it not mimic any real activities, but it also can't be used as a verb.)

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Oh, right, I have a blog!

I'm on vacation. In Asia. Visiting Carla. I'm back next week - if I decide to come back.
It's nice here.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

I ran a 5k in 18:30! Sort of. Okay, no I didn't.

This past weekend was a double race weekend for me - in the sense that I ran twice with a number pinned to me. Neither was my best effort.

Saturday saw me at a 5k with my alumni association. Ellen was there, too. It was a beautiful day.

Well, sort of. At the start, the announcer informed us that this race (the first they'd held) was six months in the making and they were sorry, but the course was "a little short."

It was 2.13 miles per my Garmin. I finished in just over 18 minutes. Just curious: in 6 months of planning a 5k, how does no one think, "Should we plan a 3 mile course now?"

But that wasn't all. Check out the bibs:

Ignoring the fact that it was a laminated index card (as in, sharp edges), there's a sweet postcard in the actual mail to the first person who notices what's wrong with this bib.

Yes, that's Ivy League material right there.

In case you're wondering about the second race this weekend, I ran the Riverdale Ramble on Sunday. I was coasting by on no sleep and only did it because loads of my friends would be there and I wanted brunch after. Somehow I eked out a finish one minute faster than last year. I hate that bastard of a race.

Confidential to the guy in Ravenna, Nebraska who found my blog by googling "girls looking for sex in Ravenna Nebraska": call me.

Just kidding. They're shoes.