Friday, January 25, 2008

Did You See It?

I went to see Spirit of the Marathon last night. Except for having to pay $10.00 for the movie (I did get a free bag of popcorn) and going by myself, I'm glad I went. It was an interesting experience being in a theater full of runners watching a movie about running. Well, at least, based on comments and laughter at all the right spots, I assume most of the folks there were runners. Everybody groaned right along with the runners who were profiled.

The movie profiled 6 runners who were preparing to run the 2005 Chicago Marathon. The crowd shots of the marathon itself were something. They aren't unique but vividly showed the size of the running crowd.


Gerald, 65 years old, gives me hope. At almost 54, though I know I'm not as fast as I was at 16, I'm in far better aerobic shape than I was then. But, I do sometimes wonder how long I can continue running.

Ryan was really intent on qualifying for Boston. I loved his comment to the effect of not having a runner's body. And, his demonstration, on a treadmill, of the difference between an "average" runner's pace and an elite runner's pace was effective.

Leah started running again to help her get her life back together. Though I haven't had the problems she faced, I do think running has helped me keep my sanity in a stressful, every-changing job.

Lori likes running by herself. I enjoy running with others occasionally and there have been times when I really wished for a running partner. But, for the most part, running is my "I-time".

Then there are the professionals. Deena Kastor came across as focused, intense but very down-to-earth. We all hurt with her when she talked about the injury that kept her out of running for several months. Then her race to the finish of the Chicago marathon was great.

I've saved Daniel Njenga for last. Daniel took me "home". Having lived in Kenya for 18 1/2 years, I was instantly transported when he started speaking in that unique accent that is so typical of central Kenyan English speakers. I wanted to shout, "Ndiyo! Sema." Then, when they showed him walking around and running in the Nyahururu area of central Kenya, I could almost smell the smells and feel the mud clinging to my shoes. I don't know, specifically, if Nyahururu has been hit by the violence in Kenya during the last 3 weeks, but it is so typical of those areas. That left me with mixed emotions -- glad to be seeing what felt like home but sad over the plight of so many innocent people who lives have been devastated by the killing and burning that's gone on. Previous blogs on Kenya situation:

Runner's High
Update on Kenya
In the Midst of Chaos and Suffering
Kenya Relief Work
And God Sighed
...and Sighed Again

The movie will be screened again on 21 February 2008 in several locations. Even at $10, I recommend it to runners.

Run well, y'all,
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