I recently finished another running book entitled “My Life On The Run: The Wit, Wisdom and Insights of a Road Racing Icon” by Bart Yasso. Bart has run marathons on Mount Kilimanjaro to the blistering cold of the Antarctic. He is an icon for being willing to try out the exceptionally elite to the craziest of crazy running races. His book is about how he found his way into running, it’s redemptive power as he recovered from drugs and alcohol, his battle with lyme disease, his experiences through running, and where the journey has brought him. It is a look into the far corners of this world and how running brings people from all cultures and walks of life together.
I appreciate the faith Bart puts into “running is for everyone.” Time and time again, he points out that running is a camaraderie and his hearts desire is for people to have the best possible experience and then take it and inspire others. Being a slow runner myself, he reminded me I am a part of the running family as well, regardless of my speed! Everyone is a runner, according to Bart. All you have to do is get out there and train!
my bib for the Dallas Marathon (my first marathon)
Though I haven’t been running as faithfully since we moved, it reminded me of the running community I left behind in New York. I thought about my first marathon (read about it here and here) and how novice and experienced runners could come together and cheer each other on, talk about the tough training runs and the race day jitters. I thought about my last half marathon this past March and the honor it was to run with my friend Nancy in her first half marathon (read about it here). I also thought about how much I actually missed running (did I just say that?) and how I enjoyed being able to go out and run 8 to 10 miles like it was no big deal (who is this person talking?).
Nancy and I before her first 1/2 marathon
I laughed when he talked about the Bare Buns Run. Yes, your thought it correct. Bart ran a 5k naked; it was awkward and hilarious all wrapped up into one. I was in awe when he shared how he took on the Badwater Ultra. The Badwater Ultra is one of the craziest, most challenging races on the planet. I first read about this race several years ago when I was training for my first half marathon. It is 146 miles through California’s Death Valley, one of the hottest and driest places in the United States. And he finished. I was impressed when he wrote about his time training convicts from an inpatient drug and alcohol rehabilitation center for a relay race in his home state. It was a powerful story of how a little bit of trust and belief that these men could finish something could go a long way!
with the road racing icon Bart Yasso
I got to meet Bart last November at the 2012 NYC Expo. He is still encouraging people to begin their running journey. You would never know from his humble demeanor that you were talking to a running legend. His book was a neat read and I’m glad he took the time to put his thoughts and stories down on paper. It’s a reminder to push the limits in this life of ours!
my biggest supporter and fan, the huzband
And yes, I did go out for a run after I finished his book! It was a beautiful evening for a run; a great reminder to be thankful that I can.