Friday, April 15, 2005

Yeah, I run a little...

With my 30K/18.7M run coming up on Saturday morning I am taking two nights off from running. Last night my wife felt like staying home so I took the scooter out to our garden and cut the grass. The weather has been nice lately so I spent a couple hours weeding, loosing up all the garden beds and cleaning the grass out between the stones in the walkway.

We have about 70-80 gardens in our club, so there were several neighbors coming and going. The most I haven’t seen since last fall, so I had several people ask me if I had lost a lot of weight over the winter. Now I lost 3Kg/7lbs since last summer, which is not world shaking, but I guess I have toned up considerably.

So anyway since I have lost at least a couple pounds, I said “Yeah, I lost a few pounds!” Almost everyone who asked said, “I think quite a few pounds, have you been dieting?” “Well not really, I just kind of watch what I eat, no beer, limited sweets…” “Do you do sports?” “Oh, I run a little.”

Now my neighbor, who also works in my company, knows I have been training for a marathon. He was getting a big kick out of this the whole time. Finally after about the third person said something to me he comes over to me and asked why I don’t tell the people that I am training for a marathon. Good question! I told “Oh, I don’t know,” and left it at that.

But as I was pulling weed I thought about what he asked. With some people I just love to talk about my running, but generally these are people who share at least some interest. But with others I kind of shy away from talking about my running and especially my racing. It is almost like if I tell them I am going to run a marathon then I will have to meet their expectations of a marathon runner.

Generally speaking the German attitude about sports that I have experienced is that you must always give 110%, if you can’t or are not willing then you shouldn’t be doing it. This is changing in a lot of sports, with running for example, you are seeing more and more “normal” people at the races – but the attitude is still dominant.

So anyway I guess I don't want any stress about the whole thing. I rather just wait, do my marathon, then just wear the T-shirt and see if anyone notices:)

Gosh, just finishing would be an accomplishment, and with your times, you'll race with a strong pace. What do you think they are expecting? Somehow I know you'll give 110%. You know, the more people you tell, the more support (and pressure?) you'll have. Which could be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on your perspective.
I always thought that the more people that I told the more support that I would get. But when I started doing this I generally either got indifference, remarks that I am crazy, or people questioning my training. I then started being really selective on who I told. My boss, a runner, is very supportive, he would like to run a marathon someday too. I have another co-worker who is a marathon runner that has given me a lot of tips. No offers for the cheerleading section yet:((
We will all be your cheerleaders from afar. I also got a weird mix of reactions when I was training for my 1st and a few surprising looks when they see my hat which says 26.2. "You've run a marathon!?!" I think it then makes them think twice about the excuses they have for not running one. It prompted my much faster brother to do one. I think he was po'd that his older/fatter sister did one before
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