Monday, October 26, 2009

An Easy 20

Ok, it was an easy 15 followed by a not too difficult 5, but one year ago I would never have imagined using the qualifier "easy" in front of a 20 mile run. I am slowly becoming what back then I thought of as one of "those" runners. Of course if you believed the runners quoted in last weeks NY Times, I am one of the people ruining the marathon. Hey, I train just as hard for my marathons as any middle of the pack runners. I do long runs, tempo runs, intervals on the track, and hill repeats. But since I have not been blessed with fast genes (my brother managed to get all those), my time is a "joke" and I don't deserve a finishers medal or T-shirt. That article really got me steamed up, even though I know it shouldn't. The plus side is, I saw one letter to the editor that I really got a kick out of:

To the Sports Editor:

I couldn’t agree more with the women’s cross-country coach Adrienne Wald, who said, “It’s a joke to run a marathon” in six or more hours.

In 2007, at age 70, I completed my 32nd marathon. I take great pride in telling people I did it in 2 hours 245 minutes 28 seconds.

Peter H. Reader

Portland, Ore.

That definitely put a smile on my face. I guess there is a reason I've done 4 ultras this year and only 2 marathons. Ultra runners are much more all inclusive and welcoming. Although I do wonder how many hundreds of marathoners the writer had to interview to find the two elitist snobs that were willing to have their remarks quoted. I've only run across one jerk in real life who said after I told him my time of 4:58, "oh, you took your time, then." Of course I athlinked his ass when I got home and saw that he had only run one marathon and his time was 4:38 and he was 24 years younger than me at the time.

Wow, this post had a lot more ranting than I had intended, but at least now I can concentrate my efforts on my next event. The Peachtree City 50K in less than two weeks!


Jess said...

First of all, congrats on running an "easy" 20! No matter how fast you ocmplete that, I don't think it is ever "easy."

As for the NY Times article, that sentiment seems to crop up every few years, and it's just ridiculous for people to critictize those who complete a marathon in a slower time. How many elites can run for 5 or 6 hours? They're done after 2; it's a lot harder for those of us who are slower and are out on the course longer. It requires a whole different kind of endurance!

Ms. V. said...

LOVE how you made athlink into a verb: I athlinked his ass.


Hey, you're speedy to me! I'M ruining the marathon... :)