Running without stress
Kinetic freedom striding
Goals getting checked off


Photo Credit: By Kyle Cassidy (Email) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons

It was about an hour in before
I started hearing the voices,
Goggins, Hritz, Ferriss, Hubba, Reggio,
Each talking their motivational s#*t,
Each getting pushed aside as the laps accumulated.

It was the first run after a winter of pneumonia,
After the disarray of basketball,
After the excitement of baseball, and
The welcome of pre-retirement practice,
AKA, summer vaca…

The track was the same,
Sixteen laps to a mile,
The old guy with short shorts was still
Teaching old ladies and sounding as if he
Was of the Wink Martindale of kickboxing.

The shoes were new,
Fresh, right out the box,
New Balance, probably about 70% made in the USA,
Which didn’t figure into my purchase,
They just felt good.

So, an hour in,
And the ache of inactivity was upon me,
But the goal was all Clubber, “Pain,”
Because Hritz has been pushing Goggins
And it was time that this aging guy of privelege and avoidance suffered.

The truth is that we all probably go easy
Looking for the economy, the proximity, the most convenient,
I watched a guy wait for a parking spot at Wal-Mart,
The second in its row,
While the third spot was empty as #2 pushed the cart out of the store.

So, an hour in,
The suffering began,
Keep in mind that I was slow, like never had run this slow,
Managing only two laps at a time, then taking a walk break,
Ferriss began suggesting meditation, but I was too far gone for that.

Perhaps though, self-talk is a kind of meditation,
I barked at me for being so lazy,
I encouraged me to keep on going,
I started thinking about the old people down below
And said, I should be more like them for they seemed to not be suffering.

So, an hour in,
Hubba and Reggio, friends, the same
But different, began their ranting about being weak,
Getting old, having lost it,
For awhile I listened, thinking of some comebacks. Nothing worked.

Then, the class below changed,
Two tanned teachers and a slightly younger clientele began their jumping around
Their energy was different, but their schtick was the same as December
When the bug first knocked me down.
I was really suffering, then… and, now…

A buzz on my wrist
Broke my thoughts of new-goal-survival-mode
I looked down to see six-miles down
At an hour and forty-five minutes gone.
Maybe the slowest ever, but back for more challenges.

“Culture is the intersection of people and life itself. It’s how we deal with…”
Wendell Pierce

What seems to be right

Has little or no reason

Without common goals

Let’s get right to the crux of things. I beat to a different drum, but not so different that I could be called “out there.” I’ve learned over the past few days, that I don’t get excited by comedies. They are okay, but I don’t hold onto the jokes from movies or television shows the way some people do. At the same time, though, I love banter with friends that is funny. Go figure. I also learned that I have a fashion sense that is polarizing. I wore a bolo tie the other day and it caused quite a stir. There weren’t any riots on the streets of the Nation’s capitol, but the tie was a love it or hate it proposition. For what it’s worth, I like the tie and will wear it again.

The shocker for me has been the reaction from people when I tell them about this marathon.They cannot get their heads around the idea that I am going to run twenty-six miles (and change) around a gym court. I was even told it was weird. I guess it’s weird in the context of normal marathon running. All of the marathons I ran in my thirties were point-to-point races. They were outside with cheering fans and regular water stops. Traffic was diverted so that we could run a race of individual accomplishment under the guise of raising money for charity. I always wondered if the police, who made the race safe by managing the traffic headache, were working for free. If not, a portion of my entry went to paying overtime and not to the charity for the race.

I find that weird. So, I’m running this race in a way that makes me feel like 100% of my efforts are going to the organization of my choice. If it’s not apparent from this post, I also have a fairly opinionated and stubborn streak. I just want to do this my way and I am more than a little surprised at the reactions of people. The track freaks them out. Ultimately, though, distance is distance.

As for the training, the week went well. My calf is sore and I have given into this being my challenge. I will continue to train and manage the pain smartly, but I will not give into this silly tightness. Go ahead, tell me of the future damage I could cause. I’ll listen, but I’m doing this race to test me and I’ll find a way to work around tight calves. After all, I’ve had them all my life. Despite the pain, I put in twelve miles this week and am ready for whatever comes next.

Weirdo, out…

Jackie Robinson.

A great player. The right man for history.

Now I am linked to him,

Not in historical significance

More in numbers, quantification really.

My colleague and I were talking

Middle aged men reminiscing

About those run-all-day days

About those eat-all-day days

We knew not so long ago.

We wondered why we get

So tired after work,

Having so little energy for other stuff.

Then Mr. Robinson came to light,

His weight of being really too much to carry.

One year, that’s all it took

To create unforeseen changes,

A present so unrecognizable

That something must be done.

To know is one thing,

To commit another.

Better get with it.

A lull between games
With just enough time
To purchase an indoor cycle
To kick start the lull in my cardio.
The mission now
To own motivation
Without worshipping some clown
Or obsessing on the science.
Exercise should be fun
Training too
Although now I think I’m working out
Just to feel good
Forget crazy goals
Aspirations of the some great distance run
I just want to sweat
Move my legs, and
Feel more energy
Beginning right after this double header
Of youthful hoop action

I want to be the guy
Who arrives at a wedding
In golf shoes with the spikes removed
Because they are the nicest shoes I have
And I don’t give a hoot about convention

I want to be the guy
Who sits in the back of the room
Sizing up the “questionables” up front
And uses their self-serving logic against them
When it’s best for the whole team

I want to be the guy
Who doesn’t need a big stick
Since my words carry weight
In their softness and conviction
That can’t really be denied

I’ve got some work to do.