April 20, 2017

This Time

This time is the same.

As I approach the starting line of my 200th race marathon or longer, I still have no clue what I am doing. And I'm still having so much fun doing whatever feels right when I'm out there on each run.

This time is the same.

I have 14 different pairs of shoes in the running rotation, and I never wear the same pair two days in a row. Yoga is one of my best friends. Meditation continues to grow on me.

This time is the same.

I think about this next race at least 30 times each day, dreaming of how it's going to feel when all systems are go and the miles are floating past. And how it's going to feel when all systems are no and I can't figure out how to unzip my tent from the inside. Or where the zipper is on my sleeping bag.

This time is different.

This time, I see the boundless beauty of the sunrise as I paint the canvas below it with miles on top of miles.

This time is different.

This time, I hear the birds as they chat back and forth. And the wind as it makes the trees creak. And a growing optimism that comes when you once again make friends with the hurt.

This time is different.

This time, I smell the honeysuckle as I'm in pre-dawn flight over rolling country roads. And the hint of rain on the air just before a downpour.

This time is different.

This time, I feel my mind forging steel it hasn't experienced in a very long time. And the burn in my quads when speed work gets real. And the sun on my cheeks during so many mid-morning long runs.

This time is different.

This time, all the work has been laser-focused on helping me find that sweet spot where I'm covering the ground with the least amount of wasted energy. Relaxed, rhythmic roll rules.

This time -- as I look down the barrel of my first 6-day race -- I am reminded of these two irrefutable truths:

Fear often bats first.

Hope always bats last.

March 21, 2017


Super-long Tuesday morning city run, hiking along and enjoying some grub when I hear, "Hey, what are you doing?"

"Running and having some breakfast."

"You eat McDonald's when you're running?"

"If it's a really, really long run like this one, yeah. Sometimes."

"You're weird."

"Do you guys know what the word 'perceptive' means?"

"That we're smart?"

"I think of it as being able to tell what something really means or what something really is."

"So if Miguel says that you're really weird, then he is perceptive?"

"Hey, you're the one who said he's weird!"

"OK, then I'm ... what is that word again?"


"Yeah, that's it. I'm perceptive, too. And we're only in the third grade."

"Y'all have a great day, fellas."

"How long you gonna run for?"

"Another couple hours."

"We'll almost be eating lunch by then. Well, OK. You keep running."

"I hope to. For a very, very long time."