Saturday, July 26, 2008


Inner peace and utter relaxation with sport is not easy to achieve, especially if you are a competitive athlete. While in Vermont I ran short little slow runs up and down hills. I mean very slow. 10-11 minute pace and watched birds and slow turtles crossing roads. I ran so slow I was totally chill with my thoughts and aware of where I was at all times. I took in everything.

Prior to running in Vermont I ran 4 times over a 6 week period before running at the Twighlighter. I did not run that race very fast. However, after, I was not tired and was able to stay up all night and talk to friends. In the end, more fun and important than running my guts out. Presently, I am tired and have tons of extra energy to do many other activities without feeling tired.

Point being is that I used to spend lots of time doing exercise/running and really only got a little faster and in the end, spent lots of time doing it and avoiding/ignoring critical life skill endeavors, which, down the road, make you a stronger/more well rounded person.

Case in point,

I can say that between 22-29, I took a real break from organized sports. I played lots of Basketball but that's it. I spent these years working, dabbling in interestning business projects, traveling, getting involved with other hobbies, partying, dating(tons) and learning as much as I could about the broader world. I learned a lot because I took the time to spread myself in many different directions and explore everything.

I started running more in my 30s and found it an easy way to meet people, socialize, etc(especially in DC). Heck, I used races as a means to travel throughout DC, VA and MD. I ran Riley's on a whim one year after spending all night and early morning in some dive night club in Adams Morgan.

When I started getting more competitive and running harder and racing harder, it fed the ego and I got faster. However, such an endeavor takes time and energy, etc....... and ultimately, the sport took valuable time away from developing/maintaining some friendships, career stuff, other hobbies, etc.

Bottom line is I am re-discovering that running, like most activities, is a means to an end. Its a way to see a nice country road or travel about on some trails or simply run with a group of friends to talk about life. How to keep it this way and maintain a balance, is the key to success and long term happiness with the sport.

Yes, these are just words, and though I do not always abide by them, I think they speak some truth.

Anyway, this is what becomes of you after spending a week with Mom in Vermont.

Also, despite my good natured way, I still expect Jake, Jason, or someone to beat Bert at a race. My memory tells me that Bert is undefeated against the whole lot of you.

peace out


havegoats said...

Jake and I have both beat bert several times. Jake got him last at Club Nats this past december (he edged me out by two seconds that race after we changed leads 4 times in the last mile). We both got him at last years Pike's Peak.

I think your epic posts need an editor/fact checker...

havegoats said...

I also got him at last years St. Pattys day race

KLIM said...

Jason also beat him in poker.

Peter said...

We took Bert paintballing and this is what happened to him. I think he's been roughed up enough.