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September 30, 2011

Born to Run

By: Jake Marcus

As you can see below, Brian and Alix have both started there blogs.  We have been discussing a lot of plans for fundraising, but are still unsure how we will implement these ideas so I don't want to say too much yet.  Expect more events this year, hopefully hitting different demographics in all of them.  Already, my sister and Tiffany Ko are planning an event in San Francisco.  I'm not exactly sure what they are planning to do but they received $250 from Whole Foods (thank you Whole Foods!).  I'm sure it will be a fun event.  Check out their fundraising site to donate http://www.active.com/donate/nca11tcvegassf/Alix-and-Tiffany

That's about it for fundraising, but my running is currently in full swing.  Or was, but now I'm in the taper stage of training for the ING Hartford Marathon on October 15th.  My training is a bit different than my marathon training for my first marathon.  For one, I've pretty much neglected speed work entirely.  Between school and a full-time internship (as well as a pretty long commute from the Bronx to Manhattan) I just haven't had the time to do hard workouts 2-3 times a week.  Instead, I sometimes take some days harder than others.  A positive has been on Sundays I usually feel pretty good so have gotten in consistent long runs for the last couple months and built up to 24 miles in 2 hours, 40 minutes three weeks ago and two weeks ago actually got in about 34 miles in 19 hours off of 2 hours of sleep.  The reason for this was because I did the Reach the Beach relay with my friend Stephen Ivanoski.  This is a 200-mile relay between 12 people and is usually finished around 24 hours.  We did 25:30 hours and finished 147th out of 440.  This was a very fun experience which included starting running at about 2pm, doing another run at about 11pm, another one at 1am, and finished at 7am as well as warmups and cooldowns so my legs didn't feel tired for the next run.  Doesn't sound very fun but I met a lot of cool people and it ended up being a great time.

My internship in New York with Permal is going great.  I'm learning a lot of new things and Fordham is a nice school.  The running makes the days a lot tougher but is a good stress reliever.  Being in New York for the Sox collapse wasn't great but hopefully the Pats will turn it around after last week's performance because that would be miserable.

I have one last note for this week.  A friend of mine got me an early birthday present of the book Born to Run by Christopher McDougall.  I highly recommend this to anybody including people who don't run. 

It discusses a hidden tribe of superathletes who love running in its purest form.  No watches, No iPods, and No Shoes.  The no shoes part sounds insane but it is very real.  While it is a very new idea, it has been proven so far to reduce injuries and make you run faster.  I've tried it a few times and it does feel more natural then the padded shoes.  A lot of times when I run, I get caught up in times and can't wait for the run to be over from the beginning.  I tried not running with my iPod for a few months and loved it but in the Bronx I prefer headphones because some people can be obnoxious. 
I get caught up in thinking I'm tired but McDougall makes a lot of good points about running such as that it's the most natural thing for humans and that it is likely immersing yourself in a hot tub, it takes a while to adjust.  Anyways, a lot of the characters in the book are absolute animals.  Some run hundreds of miles at one time and are unfazed by it. 

I've always loved runners and think they are typically the nicest people, and this book confirms that.  There is no community like it and I'm glad to be a part of it.  At the two races this summer with Team Challenge, everyone was extremely nice which has made this fundraising even more enjoyable. 

I haven't finished Born to Run but everyone should read it, one of my favorite quotes is "You don't have to be fast. But you'd better be fearless."  I don't consider myself all that fast but enjoy running and taking on new tasks.  Another thing McDougall says is that runners can't fear the beast (the beast being the long races) and that they must be able to beat the beast.  Sometimes I do get intimidated and feel unprepared for races even if I've trained my hardest, but I feel more confident in my ability to take down a marathon even after doing just one.  After this, I have goals of completing an ultra-marathon (anything over 30 miles) and hopefully an ironman.  I am a little scared just typing that but I know I'll be able to conquer it when the time comes. 

My final note about this book: everyone in it loves running.  The only time I will stop running is when I legitimately have absolutely no time in the day to do it or when I hate it.  There are days when I do dread getting out for a run and I do despise the treadmill, but more often than not running is great.  It takes a while to actually like for a lot of people, but I've seen many people who despise it at first, run for a few weeks and then love it.

I could go on about this book for days so I'm just going to stop now but definitely read it.  Next time I post will likely be after my marathon.

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