Monday, April 27, 2009

The long view

I have some interesting thoughts bouncing around in my brain. It's a strange convergence of Tim Twietmeyer and Susan Boyle.

Here's the bottom line: Take the long view and don't judge a book by its cover.

Twietmeyer is big stuff on the ultra circuit. I could go on for paragraphs about his laurels, but here's a starter: He has over 20 finishes at the Western States 100 mile endurance run in under 24 hours. And, he's a five-time winner of the event.

I listened to a podcast this morning while running on the U of FL campus. Twietmeyer was being interviewed and stated that his life turned around when he second child was born with Down Syndrome in 1992. It was at that point his running became more integrated into his overall life. And that change in perspective allowed Tim to start winning races.

Boyle is a youtube sensation, the runaway star of "Britain's Got Talent." She was being ridiculed by the audience during her intro; most saw her as frumpy and associated that with a lack of talent. But her strong performance wowed the crowd and turned hecklers into fans.

So it goes in my endurance sport world. I needed a mental tune up after the Croom 50 mile and needed a bit of Tim's attitude - to put running into perspective with the rest of my life. And the saga of Susan Boyle taught me to welcome and embrace everyone who comes into the sport; don't judge by outward appearance, strive to find the light inside. I can remember several 100 mile events where small, portly men waddled past me during the final 10-mile stretch. I underestimated a talent greater than my own and for that I am sorry.

So let's keep it in perspective, embrace the athletes around us, and journey forward into this thing we call life.

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