~Consider The Runner~
I say consider the friend. When I approached Punk Rock Tri Guy Ron and asked him if he would like to write a guest post on my blog there was no hesitation at all. His answer was a quick “Happy to” He represents all that I feel and see in my running buddies. A quick positive response, a bit modest in his abilities, in which I just as quickly reassured him that he is more than qualified to write in my blog. He has on more than one occasion, inspired me to get the heck up off my butt and get moving. He tells me to enjoy the art of movement. His blog is awesomely written and if it doesn’t inspire you to enjoy the art of movement than I don’t know what will. So, take a seat and read a find piece of writing – Guest post Numero Nueve. That is #9 for you spanish challenged peeps. Thanks RON!!
Winning has nothing to do with racing. Most days don’t have races anyway. Winning is about struggle and and effort and optimism, and never ever ever giving up.
I am not a fan of the word “Guest” for it symbolizes (to me) the need to be on ones best behavior and to literally portray yourself in such a way that the host never had the enjoyment of “your” company rather that of someone who you might like to think you are but could never uphold in the long run. So as I started to write this “Guest” post (several times I might add) I found myself veering off course from who I was/am to please the host. “Just write about anything” I was told but it’s never that simple. What if I suck? What if my post single handily undermines her blog to the point that no one dare visit again?
Bottom line, my assignment was to write about running & I had decided that I wanted to somehow express just how ridiculous this whole concept of running really is. As a society, we are no longer “hunters” relying on our ability to out run or out last our prey (so that we could feed our tribe) but we continue to push our bodies, like lemming, over the edge for the privilege to call ourselves “runners”.
Then it hit me! “Consider the Lobster” Ron!
The late David Foster Wallace wrote an amazing article about the Maine Lobster Festival called “Consider the Lobster” that questioned, rightfully so mind you, the ethics of boiling a creature alive in order to enhance the pleasure for the customer. So it is with this in mind, that I give you my “Consider the Runner” guest blog.
As runners, we are both the consumer and the lobster.
We knowingly torture ourselves; push the limits of comfort all under the assumption that the pain & suffering will add pleasure in the form of achievement or fitness to our lives. We pay for the privilege to don a number, voiding us of our given name, to travel great distances in search of a pace or finish time that will justify the countless miles incurred during our training runs only to be disappointed that we fell short or ecstatic that we succeeded only to revise our goal for the next event. As runners, we are all greedy for something that we may never achieve; a wholly grail of fitness that is always, and deliberately, just out of reach…….Pretty cool.
How many of us have continued to run when we hurt? Really hurt, not just discomfort but real pain. Who among us has started to run again too soon after an injury? Against doctor’s orders and our own better judgment? Have you pushed yourself to the point of collapse only to justify your actions at a later date? How many times do we willingly dive feet first into the boiling water of running?
We all agree that the reward of fitness is worth the journey but we, the consumers, push the lobster too far over and over again until we reach that next level of fitness. At which time we smile, breathe deep and decide that we would much prefer the next higher level of fitness. We’re junkies looking for that next fix and we wouldn’t have it any other way.
Running truly is, in the words of David Foster Wallace, “to confront a dimension of yourself that is as inescapable as it is painful”. To be clear, David was not talking about running when he made this observation but as a runner, I think that everything anyone says applies to running.
We train, we hurt, we run and we find satisfaction for a fleeting moment, THEN we train, we hurt…….
So there you have it, my guest blog. Please do not hold it against my host.