Athletes are superstitious. It is reported that Michael Jordan wore his University of North Carolina shorts under his Chicago Bulls uniform while leading the team to six national championships. So when I picked up my race bib for the Runner’s World Grand Slam — races 37-40 on the year — and found it was actually my birthday (I was born on August 23), I took it as an excellent omen. I gave… Read More
Six years ago tonight, I sat in this same hotel, in a bed just like this one. I ordered spaghetti with grilled chicken, red pepper flakes and olive oil from room service, seeking to recreate the pre-run meal I’d grown accustomed to at home. It wasn’t on the menu, but the kitchen obliged. When it arrived, however, something in the chicken smelled like bleach. I ate cautiously, only until I felt like… Read More
The 5k is the entry-level distance. The race that gets people off the couch. The race a friend talks you into over a third drink and it seems like a good idea. For those like me who prefer longer distances, the 5k hardly provides time to warm up before it’s over. For others, it’s the perfect distance to push for the entirety. The 27 year old winner of this morning’s Runner’s World… Read More
Four races. Three Days. 26.2 total miles. A journey will culminate in Bethlehem. My girlfriends and I are just a few of the several hundred people gathered on a Friday afternoon for 3.8 trail miles in Bethelhem’s South Mountain Park. We will all complete the Grand Slam – 3.8 mile trail race, a 5k, a 10k and a half marathon over three days. It’s over quickly; I’ve rarely run anything shorter than… Read More
I entered Nicole’s house through the garage at 7:11am, 11 minutes after I’d planned to arrive, but with 19 minutes to spare on our 7:30am departure. Plenty of time, I knew, to use her bathroom; I’d change into my running sneakers on the way to Defiance Point, ten minutes away. As I pinned my bib onto my right thigh, I watched Nicole roll her calves on an acupressure ball. On the… Read More
“Mirabelle! Mirabelle!” I shouted and waved my arms, willing her to see me from the other side the street where she was closing in on her final half-marathon miles, at a strong, 7:21 per mile pace. She grinned, confirming that she’d seen me. It would be hours before I reached the spot where she now was on the out-and-back course, as I was going twice the distance, and at a slower pace…. Read More
Thirty-four races, and it’s just another Saturday. Just another 10k, and I run, not drive, to and from Magnuson Park in Seattle, turning the morning into 18 miles. There is nothing remarkable about Race 34, on a course I’ve run before. Except perhaps, the sky.