In running, there aren’t any lucky bounces, fluke hits or bad calls. We make our own luck nearly every day. That’s one of the beauties of our sport.
More than anything, as runners, we’re extremely fortunate (rather than lucky). We have made ourselves into what we are by a combination of other factors and being dedicated to running is certainly one of those contributing factors.
Over the years, people have said to me how lucky I am—i.e., fortunate—to be a runner and have something which has sustained my interest for a lifetime. That’s certainly true, but when we—motivated, goal-oriented, health-conscious, optimistic people—find running, we also quickly find something which suits our personalities and that we can be passionate about.
Like most red-blooded American boys, I’ve played just about every sport, but nothing matched my skill set and personality better than running. I still like to cycle, swim and chase golf balls around. Even so, there’s no way I’m going to get up at 5 on a Saturday morning in August for anything but a long run.
Just being able to run 20 miles might not seem extraordinary in the context of our running peer group, but it is. We’re the real one per centers. Maybe not in terms of wealth, but we’re the ordinary folks who do extraordinary things every week.
And for that, I am eternally grateful.
O Jennifer Harney, who was third in the Austin Marathon last month, had picked a little 10-K in Georgetown last weekend to get back into racing and get ready for the Capitol 10,000 next week. But, at the very last minute, Harney decided to drive up 35 to Waco for the Bearathon Half Marathon. Good thing. Harney got there with minutes to spare but jumped in and won the women’s division (and was fifth overall) in 1:29:27 on a tough course and to earn $500. Becky Stanford of Austin was the fourth woman and Laura Bexley was fifth.
O Former Brooks tech rep Carlos Rivas, a familiar sight in these parts, has opened his own running store in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Carlos, who is from Houston, is calling his new store Run Culture.
O Austin police have charged Joseph Cantu of Cedar Park with failure to stop and render aid in the death of former UT runner Phillip Wood who was killed on March 2. Wood was walking across the northbound lanes of MoPac near Windsor when he was hit and killed by a car which was being driven on the far inside lane.
O More police blotter. Bobby Loftin was sentenced this week to 12 years in prison after pleading guilty to aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. Loftin attacked a woman runner on the north side of the Butler Trail in clear daylight near Comal Street and was set upon by the other women in the group whoquickly hailed a nearby APD officer who arrested Loftin. One less creep to worry about.
O The third edition of the Austin 10/20 race will be April 13th at The Domain and race director Peter Douglass is expecting upward of 6000 runners for the 10-miler. It’s the same flat course as last year with plenty of great music along the way. Puddle of Mudd, a long-time band out of Kansas City, will be the headliners.
O Dave Cody, the long time Fox News Sports Anchor who retired last year, is putting his extra time to good use. Cody, a Lakeway resident and habitual golfer, has lost 100 pounds since he started a running program two years ago. He looks in great shape.
O The Austin American Statesman Capitol 10,000 is next Sunday (April 6) and it looks like the elite field is shaping up nicely. Although the field isn’t set in stone, ’13 champion Eric Chirchir will defend his title against a field which includes Aussie Olympian Lee Troop, who won Cap 10 in 1994. Others listed include Siyabonga Nkonde of South Africa, who won the ’12 Austin Half, two-time Cap 10 champ Scott MacPherson (getting ready for Boston) and 2013-14 Austin Distance Challenge winner Erik Stanley and the aforementioned Jennifer Harney. A few others who are scheduled to run include Jose Munoz of San Antonio and Kiya Dandena of Houston. David Fuentes is iffy as he is working a triathlon expo in Galveston until Saturday night.
O Congrats to Karen and Albert Saenz on the announcement that they are expecting their second child this summer.
O Also congrats to one-time RunTex’er (now Dell) Donnie O’Neal on his engagement to his girlfriend. No date has been set yet.
O Word on the street is 60 Minutes is preparing an extensive feature on Olympian Shalane Flanagan which will air the night before (April 20th) the Boston Marathon. Flanagan, the daughter of two national-class marathoners (Steve Flanagan and Cheryl Treworgy), was raised in Marblehead, Massachusetts and will be seeking to become the first American woman to win Boston since 1985 when Lisa Weidenbach won. According to a statistical projection, based on recent times, Flanagan has a good chance (weather pending) of breaking Deena Kastor’s American marathon record of 2:19:36 and the Boston course record of 2:20:43, set in 2002 by Margaret Okayo. We’ll see.
O Natosha Rogers, the one-time NCAA 10,000-meter champ from A&M who finished second in the ’12 Olympic Trials in a school record of 31:59, is leaving College Station for Hanover, New Hampshire for a temporary gig as volunteer assistant coach at Dartmouth. It’s just for the short-term as Rogers will move to the Boston area to train under Dartmouth coach Mark Coogan who is leaving the Ivy League school in June to work and coach full time for New Balance. In Boston, Rogers will probably train with Abby D’Agostino, a Coogan protege, who is expected to also move to Boston after the collegiate season is over.
O Down in San Antonio, Soler Sports will be having a social run and send off for all Boston qualifiers on April 4th at the Jackson Keller store at 7 p.m. (Everyone is invited, whether you’re running Boston or not.) There will be plenty of good food and Lone Star beer provided after the run.
O In the second Alamo Half Marathon last weekend, Erik Burciaga won in 1:16:24. (Erik owns E-Dragon Productions and prints up many of the race shirts used in San Antonio.) Holly Semones won the women’s division in 1:23:49.
O What I’m listening to this morning: “Born Free” by Kid Rock and the Twisted Brown Trucker Band.
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