- Feb. 12 – Fri. – GVSU Big Meet – 5k – Allendale, MI – DNF (dropped out at 2600m in 7:47)
- May 14 – Sat./6am – Ice Age Trail 50 – 50mi. – LaGrange, WI – DNF (dropped out around the 30.5mi marker in just over 4h – blown quads = walked last 4mi)
- Jun. 4 – Sat./7:30am – Sunburst – Half-Marathon – South Bend, IN – 8th, 1:24:20 (embarrassing performance on the roads)
- Jul. 23 – Sat./(morning) – Mt. Marcy FKT – 15mi. – Keene, NY – DNS (ran it easy w/friends)
- Sep. 5 – Mon./(morning) – Blueberry Stomp – 15k – Plymouth, IN – DNF (dropped out at 6mi)
- Nov. 5 – Sat./(morning) – Indy Monumental – Marathon – Indianapolis, IN – DNS
- Nov. 24 – Thu.(morning) – Niles Thanksgiving Day Run – 10k – Niles, MI – DNS (injury)
- Dec. 17 – Sat./(morning) – HUFF – 50k – Albion, IN – DNS (injury)
Henry David Thoreau once said, “Methinks that the moment my legs began to move, my thoughts began to flow.” This morning, for me, this was definitely the case.
Recently, setting out for a run at 6am has been the norm. A 2-hour (17-mile) run starting in complete darkness seems completely unsustainable, but by turning off one’s goal-oriented brain, it becomes sustainable. Certainly I can take one more step? Of course, and, little by little, the ground is covered and the absolute presence is experienced. Nothing else even exists but the here and now of making my way through this supernatural environment of glowing, lake effect powder. Over the course of 2 hours, I started off with a headlamp lighting the trail, eventually watching the sun rise and poke its rays through the trees revealing cotton candy-like skies, and, finally, noting the darkening and angering clouds that proceeded to dump more lake effect on me.
To reiterate Anton Krupicka’s description, “Thankfully, running is the one thing I’ve been fortunate enough in this life to find that reliably transports me to that physic/emotional space of living, relentless, rife with effort (suffering?), but somehow, unexplainably fulfilled. Filled with life. As the run commences, I re-enter the world where the mind wanders, thinking of other things than the task at hand. But, that’s okay, because for at least the next 24 hours, my psyche will be nourished by the fact that–for at least some, nontrivial amount of time–I was there, I was in it–life–and nowhere else.”
And although long-distance running can seem like an insurmountable task at times, once flow is experienced, running becomes a sustainable, fulfillable, primal, almost selfish, indulging activity. And that, my friends, is an indescribably beautiful, important thing. It is living. In the end, it’s all there really is.
Embrace and appreciate where you’re from. I feel very fortunate to be in this place at this time. Sitting by a wood stove with my feet up, sipping a hot beverage, watching the lake effect fill the yard, at this exact moment, there is no place I’d rather be.