Summer is just a rumor here. It was so cold on my morning run along a beautiful network of single-track-track trails, I had to wear a long-sleeve shirt. Needless to say, it’s a marked contrast to what has been one of the wettest springs in the memory of the ATX. After splashing our way on run after run this spring, about the last thing on our collective minds right now is summer. But it’ll be here very soon.
What makes an ordinary, daily run a great one? Certainly, that differs from runner to runner, but even a great run tends to be fleeting, almost ephemeral. A truly great run doesn't happen every day on every run. If it did, there would never be any exceptional, memorable runs—they'd all be the same.
Although I am a political person, I try not to get too political in my weekly musings and updates on the running community. But the recent threats (and suit against the Federal government) by Texas Governor Greg Abbott and henchman-in-chief Dan Patrick over who is allowed to use public facilities is an affront to the Austin running community. Or, at the very least it should be.
Will Nation of Austin placed fifth on Saturday in the USATF 25-Kilometer championships. Nation, the former Texas Longhorn, ran 1:16:39 in the Fifth Third River Bank Run in his best race since turning pro last year. The race--and national championship--was won by Christo Landry in 1:15:31.
My educated guess is if we avoided racing and the type of training that prepares us to race well, we might largely avoid injuries. But, racing and training for those races is one of the things that makes running worth doing in the first place.
Do you ever question why you even bother running races? I certainly do. Running is easy; racing is hard and you put yourself at a very real risk of failure. Especially in a marathon. Sometimes it's great; other times, not so much.
Noted philosopher Yogi Berra, the 20th century’s version of Aristotle, once supposedly said: “Half of baseball is 90 percent mental.” So is running. Actually, sometimes it feels like half of running is 100 percent mental. Especially in the summer.
I don't happen to be one of those runners who continually looks back and laments how running isn't the same as it once was. Nothing is. Although the sport still entails putting one foot in front of the other as fast as possible, running, and especially racing, has changed dramatically over the last 30-40 years.
When I started running as a third grader, the health benefits of running were largely unknown. Even if I had been aware of the blessings running provides, it wouldn't have mattered. I was way too young to care. Nevertheless, for the vast majority of us who start running as adults, the bounty of health benefits have always been cited as the main reason why so many begin to run.
An overcast and balmy spring morning in Austin, Texas - not exactly 'perfect' running conditions - did little to prevent more than 20,000 participants from toeing the line at this year's Capitol 10,000. The race eclipse the 20K mark on Friday afternoon, a significant jump from previous years and a return to the days when the event was ranked among the biggest 10k's in the country.
An unseasonably cool April morning greeted more than 5,000 runners in north Austin for the fifth annual Austin 10/20, with temps starting out in the mid to low 40's. For a distance race in Central Texas, it couldn't get much better.
Hopefully, Patriot's Day weather will be cool and with a tail wind this year. As you are running, many thoughts will likely cross your mind during your long journey. And one just might be: Why the heck is Boston and every marathon on the planet precisely 26 miles, 385 yards?
Now that all the major winter races are in our rear view mirror, the spring racing season heats up on Sunday with the Austin 10/20. It's a 10-mile race and will be held at The Domain in north Austin, beginning at 8 a.m.
What can make a normal, every day run truly great? Certainly, that differs from runner to runner, but great runs tend to be ephemeral, fleeting. Here today, gone an hour later. Still, great runs don't happen every day on every run. If it did, there would never be any exceptional, memorable runs—they'd all be the same.
As a runner pretty much my entire life, I've always felt a little different. As a kid, I ran back and forth to school when nobody else did and was mocked for doing so. Even in college when everybody was drinking themselves under the table, I ran. And I'm still at it while plenty of my contemporaries have quit years ago.