Tuesday, June 12, 2012

No More Excuses....

One of my favorite parts of running is, obviously, races.  I don't really care about racing with the other people there (God knows, I'm not competitive), only myself.  But what I love most about races are meeting new people and seeing some of the same-old people you see at all of the other runner events.

There are some tried and true running characters in the DFW running community.  People I see at almost every race, people that are memorable.  Someday I'll learn their "real" names.  There's Crazy Run On Lady who speed walks every half marathon faster than most of us run it.  But Heeeey Guy is my newest favorite DFW Running Character.  I've seen/talked to this man at quite a few races in the last year.  He's an older man (older than my dad) who is so friendly and happy.  He's sort of stuck in the late 1960's with his "Heeeey, maaaan!  What's happening, man?" speak, but so outgoing that you can't help but smile.  We were recently in a water/beer/something line together and I had the chance to really talk to him, and hear his story. 

I'd asked him if he'd ever done a full marathon.  "No, man, I'm still new to this running thing." 

It sort of surprised me because he's pretty quick, has all the gear, and seems to know everyone at every race.

Then he told me the story of why and how he began.  His health had begun to deteriorate quickly as he aged.   In an effort to combat it all, he took up running. 

"Yea, ya know, man, I'm a PROSTATE cancer survivor.  I've got diabetes, and a pacemaker.  I gotta run."

And run he does.  With a p a c e m a k e r!  On that short course, he managed to outrun most of us younger, "healthier" folks. 

I left that race with that nagging question..."What's your excuse?"

What IS my excuse?   What's YOURS?