Skip to main content

Italian runner connection in Florence

Last night was a magic evening in the life of master man. As part of my travels in Florence, I made contact with the a legendary Italian runner and president of the local running club.  Alessandro invited me to his home for a wonderful meal and social time.

If there is a master competitor model we should all aspire to, Alessandro is the one.  He has been running for over 40 years (started at 14) and has posted marathon times in the 2:30 range.  He and his wife Sabrina, along with their son Claudio, are active in the running community. Both Sabrina and Alessandro ran the New York City Marathon in 1993.

Alessandro has recently completed a book on the running history of Italy.  The first printing was 800 copies and he recently went back on press for another 800.  I was informed that running took hold in the early 70's when Italians came upon more discretionary income and free time.

Back to important matters...the meal.  We started with pasta in home made tomato sauce, moved to two wonderful veggie pizzas, then to salad, cheese on the side, fresh strawberries with biscotti and finally a flavorful cup of espresso with latte.

We're planning a group run in Parco Delle Cascine this coming Sunday.  Alessandro compares it to New York's Central Park.  It on the north side of the River Arno to the west and I have yet to touch my Brooks Glyercine's onto that pristine territory.

This is the element of world travel this is worth more than gold.  The friendship of individuals who share a love of running and endurance sport.  We can experience so much more in life with the help of others.


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…

Nothing to see here, folks

It's been a long time since I've been active on my blog. To be honest, I got tired of putting in the work, creating content, with so little feedback or response. Time to divert to other things...such as my new fiction book, coming out soon. Part horror story, part steamy romance. You'll definitely want a copy.

There's another reason I haven't been posting. My endurance spirit is broken.

Some medical issues, some sadness is loss of speed. I don't have much range left in my pulse rate and I have put on a blob of weight.

I "ran" my 10 mile loop this 2:18. Is that ugly, or what? An overall fatigue follows the run. I remember a few years ago, I'd bang it out in straight 9's for a 1:30 - and at that time had a long section of medium effort trail included, too.

It's the new normal. It's age appropriate. I'll be 59 in two weeks. Let's get real.

Rode my mountain bike Sunday after church. Don't know what I hit but I went…


You have to look closely (click and enlarge photo if needed), but when you do, check out the 5th metacarpal (bone furthest from thumb).

The diagonal break is symbolic of what happens when your mountain bike handlebars snap around 360 degrees, and those bars catch your hand against the bike frame during the rotation.

Well there you have it. I got up after my ride over the bars and knew something was wrong, but didn't want to admit it. Rode about three miles back to the car, then went a week with some ice and heat. Thought it was good, until I smacked the same bone on the bars during a road ride the following weekend.

Time to stop the charades and get to urgent care.

For the past three weeks, I have been in a formed splint that kept the pinkie and ring fingers immobilized in a hooked formation. Don't want those tendons to move across the bone. As the doc stated, it's a "forgiving" break, but nonetheless you don't want to give the bone any excuse to shift; that…