Skip to main content

Favre and Armstrong...say it ain't so

There has been a big hissing sound in the world of professional sports over the past several months.

That's the sound of the air going out of the ball, when there's too much inflation, then a pop...then a shell without any pressure to hold it firm and intact.

That hissing sound represents the egos of Brett Favre and Lance Armstrong, as their retirement/unretirement dance continues to amaze and intrigue pro football and cycling fans.

Favre retired from the Green Bay Packers, unretired, and sent the Wisconsin team into a tizzy when reporting to training camp. After an ugly public feud, Favre moved on the the New York Jets, and resumed his career without much interruption. Lance is rumored to be coming out of retirement and riding for the Astana Cycling Team, though the team denies it at this point. The comback would include another run at the Tour de France in 2009.

This isn't a judgment call on either athlete. I can't imagine being on top of the world, admired by millions, and then feel the vacuum as one fades into semi-obscurity.

Lance has his cancer foundation, and also friends and playmates from the Hollywood sect. Brett, well, Brett plays football really well. Once away from the game, it seems he found a great deal of unrest, and needed the identity and competition of pro football.

On a much more micro level, I have moaned "no mas" on several occasions regarding 100-mile ultrarunning events. But, the passion inside me cried out for more, and I once again attempt to repair the package so that it can perform again.

Old athletes never die...they just continue to unretire and play the game.


Popular posts from this blog

Scott Jurek ate vegan, won ultras...then got divorced

(Disclaimer:  I am a Brooks-supported athlete; as part of that relationship, I was provided a complimentary copy of "Eat & Run")

I was recently on a few flights making my way home to Wisconsin and en route was able to plow through Scott Jurek's new book "Eat & Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness."

It's a fast, enjoyable read. I've been around the ultra scene for a long time and have known some of the greats, i.e. ultra champ Eric Clifton. So it's always interesting to see how the world looks from another icon's point of view.

My thoughts in no particular order:

1) I've been vegetarian/borderline vegan for 12 years and have always been concerned with protein intake.  Jurek advocates for the protein he naturally induces through his plant-based diet.  Maybe that is enough. Maybe it's not necessary to bang down 100+ grams of protein supplement every day. Good info and good advice.

2) I'm buying on big time to Scot…

Build your low cost gravel and commuter bike

It's the saga of Craigslist. You have a great perfect condition road bicycle to market. You ask a fair price. A few calls come in, most often the caller throws out a low ball offer, maybe 50% of asking price.

You don't need to give the bike away. You may not need the cash.

Consider re-purposing. You already own an excellent commuter and gravel bike. Think your bike is too low end, not good for the purpose?

Wrong. In most cases less expensive bikes are build with heavier parts, which means they are stronger. Heavier wheels = better ability to absorb commuter bumps and gravel roads.

A few simple modifications and you'll be rolling for transportation or logging road expeditions.

Here's my 2011 model Specialized Roubaix. I rode it for several seasons as a serious piece of road equipment. A few buyers offered up a few hundred dollars, so I went in another direction.

1) Added 700 x 28 Continental Gatorskin tires. Gatorskin tires wear like iron and you can trust them in off …

Now this is better...

Hey, I don't want to dole out too many epic photos in one day...but after that fatty shot from the New York City Marathon, I had to dig a bit deeper, and found this:

Check out that attractive specimen (second from right) circa 1986...only a year earlier and Tommy Terrific was looking pretty ripped.

I'll tell you this triathlon training camp was one of the high points of my master competitor career. On the left is Mark Hinson, the best triathlete in the southeast in the mid 19890's...and far right is Frank Kohlenstein, a soccer coach from South Carolina and the dude who got me into ultrarunning...that's tanned and toned Tommy next to David Bailey, one of the greatest men who ever threw a leg over two wheels with an engine.

So, right around the time of this camp, I crewed for Frank at the Western States 100 mile endurance run in California. Hinson ran with Frank through a very tough 20 mile desert section and when he made it to the next check, he pulled me aside and told…