Marathons. There’s something legendary about them, which is probably why they appeal fascinating to so many. Of course, there’s the story of Pheidippides to feed the legend. There are the amazing images of thousands & thousands of people at the start of the big city marathons, not to mention the stories they tell afterwards. But let’s cut the crap, shall we?
I’ve been looking down on treadmill running for as long as I can remember. I never really understood why one would run inside, staring at a wall. All “advantages” like “you can run in any weather” and “you can watch TV while running” fell on deaf ears. After all, I could run in any weather too if I dressed appropriatly. And I could watch the world while running which beats any TV show in my opinion.
Ironically, around the time I started to really fall in love with trail & mountain running, all of that changed.
Whether it’s a sunrise or a sunset. Or maybe a deer caught by surprise or a squirrel, master at staying on the dark side of a tree. Maybe it’s the feeling of running a small trail, meandering between trees, at…
Alright, it’s been a while. And I’m not going to write much now either.
But here’s THE NEWS:
I’ve always liked the running community. I like to believe that it’s a closer, tighter community than for example soccer, F1 or cyclism. And the more I get involved, the more I believe this to be true. Of course, at…
This is one of those in-between-messages: there isn’t much worth talking about at the moment. I’m running a bit more again, did about 62k two weekends ago, then got sick for about a week,…But since I don’t intend to write about every single run I do, not much worth telling really. However, fun things lie ahead: I’ll be running some mountains (real ones) this month, and we’re entering an Ekiden relay with twoo (intentional spelling error) teams from work.
I’m nervous. I really am. The reason for that? Trail des bosses is this Saturday and I have absolutely no idea whether I’m up for it. But whether I am or not, tomorrow, it’s business time!
Sure, I’ve done a few 27 to 30k runs the last few weeks. But that’s still nothing compared to the 65k’s that are waiting for in the woods in and around Braine-le-Comte. And it’s not just the mere numbers that scare me, no Sir! The fact that there’ll be some leftover snow, that it will be muddy and that no number is given regarding the total ascent that we’ll have to deal with over those 65k… That’s something I can hardly prepare for over here, in the Flat Flanders.
After taking a welcome 2 days off after Crêtes de Spa, I put on my running shoes on Wednesday for an 18k run with my new training buddy Gwendolyn, followed by an attempt to follow her for 55 minutes at “race speed” on Thursday. We started off at 15.8kph average, and I managed to tag along for about 20 minutes. My legs had run full after 10 minutes and then I managed to ignore them for another 10, but then it was just too much I joined her for some another 5 minutes and the last 10 minutes, but it wasn’t working out too well. It dawned on me that this had been the first time I’d really suffered while running in what must have been a year or so. Sure, there have been those days the legs were feeling tired, or the steep climbs in the Austrian mountains. But I’d always managed by dropping to a comfortable speed and this time, this hadn’t been an option. This had then been a week of extremes. The triumph in Spa, doing things lots of people think of as ” inhuman”, the failure on the track just 4 days later.
I’ll admit, I talk about running a lot. Too much maybe. I try to limit it to a minimum, but then again, over the past few years (and actually pretty much since the age of 9) it’s become such a big part of my life that there’s little else to talk about. A runner’s life.
Reactions to these tales are rather mixed. Sometimes, of course, a total disinterest in what I’m telling because, after all, running is pretty boring. Sometimes I get admiration, even though there’s plenty of people running faster, longer and in more extreme conditions than I am. Most of the time, however, I get puzzled expressions or, even better, a hesitant nod, hiding a total lack of understanding.
And then come the questions. Mainly the one big question: Why? Why would you go running for 2 hours in a row for no apparent reason. And when they ask me if I’m, by any chance, training to win some race or beat my personal best and the answer to both of these questions is negative, it doesn’t get any better.
I know it’s been a reaaaally long time since I last wrote something here, but hey, I’m back! I’ve never been too great at keeping a personal blog alive, and turns out that this isn’t going to bring any change to that. Truth is I’ve been really busy, went on holiday, some things changed at work and in life in general, but one thing hasn’t changed a bit, and it’s exactly the one thing that justifies this post today: I’m still running. Running for no reason at all.