I just finished reading Scott Jurek’s memoir/cookbook Eat and Run. Its surprisingly good. It reminded me that, while Jurek is pretty far out there on the spiritual end of the running, eh is thoughtful and articulate on the interplay between the science of running and the sports more spiritual dimensions.
So, in honor of the Jurker, here’s a great clip of him with Kilian Jornet. Check out the scene where Jurker hips Jornet to the Bone Games, by Rob Schultheis, an old book on the spiritual aspects of ultra-endurance sports oh and make sure to turn on the subtitles!
Here’s an oldie but a goodie. Desi Linden, when she was still Desi Davila, training for the 2012 Olympic trials by running 5 x 2 mile repeats at 5:15 per mile, in the winter, in Detroit. Check out her form. Its damn near perfect:
Maybe I’ll try this work out. Though for me, the pace would be about three minutes faster per mile.
This one is a different kind of Friday Inspiration. It’s a short, casual interview with of the most interesting ultra-runners out there – Anton Krupicka, Scott Jurek and Peter Balkwin. Interesting questions, and interesting answers on why they race (or don’t race) why they run, and how to treat my personal nemesis, plantar fasciitis.
I’d never heard of Balkwin before seeing this video – he seems like an interesting character. Check him (and Krupicka and Jurek) out.
The other night, bored during a six mile treadmill run, I started scrolling through so-called triathlon inspiration videos on youtube. I got mostly what you’d expect. Chris Lieto finishing Kona. An age grouper struggling to the finish line. Many of them were set to Eminem for some reason.
Then I came across this one:
Viewed almost 1.5 million times this video is almost all images of people falling to pieces. There are images of bike wrecks, runners collapsing, runners suffering from back spasms so bad they can’t stand up straight, people on stretchers, ambulances, all in the name of inspiration.
I was of two minds watching this video. Part of me was horrified that these images of people’s bodies failing them would be seen as inspiring; but another part of me was inspired by it, admiring the determination. As someone once said about the classic video of Julie Moss finishing the Ironman, “there are those who will look at that video and know they never want to do the event and those who will look at it and know they have to do it”.
Yesterday Tommy Caldwell and Kevin Jorgenson did what was considered impossible – they free climbed Yosemite’s Dawn Wall. Unlike most achievements in climbing, this one is actually getting some serious mainstream press attention, including numerous articles in the New York Times.
What Caldwell and Jorgenson did isn’t just an incredible physical feat, its an inspiration to, as Jorgenson said yesterday, “find our own dawn wall”… and send it.
Surprisingly for such a huge event, there doesn’t seem to be any footage around yet of Caldwell and Jorgenson summiting. Instead, here’s a great video with Caldwell about his obsession with the project:
This coming weekend (the 28th) is the Berlin Marathon where Shalene Flanagan is going to attempt to beat the America record. If she does it, she’ll be only the second American woman, after Deena Kastor, to break 2:20.
This is the second time in a year Flanagan has laid it all out there with an epic goal. In the spring, she hoped to win Boston, something most fans of the sport knew was a long shot. Still, she gave everything she had. She didn’t win, but she did set a new American women’s record on the course. Here’s an emotional interview with her after Boston:
The American record is also going to be tough.
As Flanagan said in this Runner’s World piece, “I may epically fail, but at least I’ll find out whether I have what it takes. It’s a daunting task.”
I really hope she gets it.
There’s about 10,000 videos online of Flanagan. She’s charming, funny, and beautiful and many of the videos focus on her personality. Fewer of them focus on her running. Here’s one of the better one’s I found that shows her actually running:
Tomorrow, I’ll be racing the mile for the first time. I’ve no idea what to expect and for a race that take me less than seven minutes (I hope!), I’m pretty nervous.
Its funny how contemporary recreational running has changed. Everyone runs a 5k, millions run marathons, but few race the mile.
I’m trepidatious, but excited to be part of the excitement at the 5th avenue mile. Getting to watch some of the world’s best, while also running myself, is a rare opportunity. Should be fun… and painful.
When you talk of the mile, there’s one name that always spring to mind – Roger Bannister. Here he is: