One thousand blog posts. Jesus that's a lot of writing. Forget Twitter and its 140 characters, or thousands of tweets, this is a real milestone. I was kind of thinking of novel ways to mark this but there is no better way than to look back.
It has been quite the ride. Blogging has become part of my routine, just as it is to slip on my running gear and putting on my Garmin. I used to sit down to type in my thoughts after a long run. The ideas turned into posts and it was gratifying. I used to think up blog posts in the middle of runs, a nice way to distract from the pain at times. As I hit 1000, the pace of posting is slowing, but the commitment to this form of record keeping endures. I can just rely on the Garmin and runsaturday and SportTracks or even a diary with columns and rows, but what fun would that be. There are always stories behind the runs and races and athletic life, and I am lucky to have found this venue, an open place to express the reasons why I run.
Number of days this blog has been in operation: 1535
Number of words I've written, give or take a few thousand: 243,803
Number of times I recapped a race: 50+
Number of jobs I have worked in the time I have had this blog: 4
Number of marathons I've written a race report for: 8
Number of Garmins I have gone through: 3
Number of pairs of shoes I have worn down in those years: 22
Number of miles while this blog has been operating: 7986
Number of kilometres: 12852.2
How many times I would have crossed the country (Canada, that is): 2
The most written word: miles
Words: This is the tag cloud generated (by Wordle)
Landmark moment (first marathon):
From "I am a marathoner" on October, 22, 2006
From "Week 16 complete, 104 days to go" on July 9, 2006.
From "Rest day = eating badly
There's fuel, then there's fuel" on October, 11, 2009
Food to avoid before a race (learned the hard way):
from Race report: Harry's Spring Run-Off
Always running: Even while on vacation
from Picture the beach
Snow (Yes weather is a big deal for runners)
from A big snow storm coming in!
Candy cane (This gets my blog so many hits over the years - people love to search 'world's biggest candy cane')
My Obama sighting on Inauguration day (when this blog turned from running to covering the inauguration) from Obama's inauguration: Presenting, the President and First Lady, in photos!
Race swag: from Night Crawler 5 miler on June 17, 2009
At the end of the rainbow... from June 15, 2006
Favourite running photo from Toronto Marathon
On running with company: "Company on the trail"
We then talk about the trail. Our favourite runs. The races we've done. We're both year-round outside runners and, on this hot day, we talk about running on this same trail, about how in the late fall it empties of spring and summer runners, about treading on snow and about winter cleats.
On melting down during a race: "Stumbling to the 5K finish line..."
All of this is to say that we're asked to train smart, but maybe I should learn to race smart and listen to the body. When it says slow, I shouldn't do the pig headed thing
On finally learning: "10 things I've learned about 'advanced' marathon training"
I'm still learning this, but rest is when your body repairs itself to become stronger
A moment or two of fame: A mention in Phedippidations blog of the week and a podcast interview with a friend on RunCast.
On pursuing a dream, and then achieving it:
Dreaming: "Race report: Scotiabank Waterfront" on September 28, 2008
A volunteer who was guiding me toward the wheelchair asked me if this was my first marathon. I just held out my hands, put up my four fingers and smiled. 'Four,' I said. 'This is my fourth.' I'm sure she'd think I was crazy if I told her I'm running my fifth in 28 days.
Scheming: "Elephant in the room
Funny, walking home from the race, I tried to come to grips with a wide range of emotions, but I can only describe myself feeling resigned. What an odd feeling
Achieving: "Reflecting on the BQ" on October 23, 2009
I've been on cloud nine over the past week. I don't think about it too much during the day, but every time I've gone out on a run since last Sunday when I qualified for Boston, there have been moments when I'm just beaming, smiling, and wanting to pump my fists
On running for my mom:
"Why I'm running today" on May 4, 2008.
Oh I wish she could see me, I think she'd be so proud. And so I run this race for my family, just for the four of us, and in the final miles, I hope to bring mom with me. (PS: I set a PR that day)
On why I run (one of many): "Winners and losers" from June 16, 2006
But of gains and losses, of pluses and minues, I see my Nalgene bottle half full. With every stride I force myself to run hard, I feel stronger somehow, and not only in my legs. I may regret forfeiting a longer slumber during my morning workouts, but relish in it when I walk into work, feeling fully refreshed and alive. Alive, good thing I mentioned that.
On Twitter and the running community: Why runners should tweet on April 9, 2009.
Us running bloggers are a real community. Although we are often separated by time or distance, there are some common themes: We love to run. We run for fitness. We train for races. We obsess over marathons and all distances that require a bib and pins. We write race reports. We log our daily miles. There's one thing I've always loved about reading other running blogs. We encourage each other, offer up advice so that although we may not run with groups, we have a group to talk back to.
On rediscovering my origins of running: "Homecoming"
It's about 20 years ago, and yumke, at aged 10, is in phys-ed class running portion, which consisted of running around the track, then around the neighbourhood. The streets are wide, with tall trees providing ample shade. On the left and right are long patches of grass, with wide houses. The path weaves, and the little runners, in Grade 5, struggle to keep up with the distance. It feels like forever for us. We take walk breaks, only speeding up once in awhile when we catch our breaths.
On the mystique of the marathon
"The Biggest Loser and the mystique of the marathon" from May 6, 2009
I saw a headline the other day in the newspaper describing a 12 inning 'marathon' game. I see on TV how there's a Seinfeld marathon. I read about a marathon bargaining session by the union.
On seeking redemption "Braving it" on Nov 3, 2009
We reach the start line ready to race, ready to "express our fitness." Marathoning for us mere mortals is not about showing off your natural running talent on race day. We freaking work for it.
Hardware: "Meaning of medals on July 20, 2008
I hang them there to remind me of what I'm working for. I hang them there on my fridge to remind me to eat well (funny, huh). They inspire me, they give me goals, they humble me and they just want me to add more hardware to that collection.
On being a bad-ass: Don't mess with runners on May 13, 2009
The kid is on my heels and we blast out for another 30 metres, and I can literally feel the wind against my body, when he says something like 'I give up' and drops off.
Bad ass part 2: Weird encounters on a long run on Jan. 31, 2009
Stickboy is running right on my heels. He's got some speed but there's one thing I like to think. You take a marathoner in the latter part of a training run, and even on a bad day, he'll take down any drunken freak who thinks they can 'run fast'.
My favourite race report: "Race report: Goodlife Fitness Toronto Marathon on October 18, 2009
Yesterday, I pulled on my running gear and ran a scant 2 kilometres. The air was crisp, the sky clear, the wind slight. Later, I traded email with my friend Lee who said he had a good feeling about today. Weather was perfect, he said. I agreed.
Seeking something big: Epic on July 30, 2009
I went to the nearby plaza where I used to buy fries with gravy AND ketchup after school, and gobbled a few slices of pizza, a bottle of water and a bottle of orange juice, with barely enough change to take the train back home.
Not a post, but a book: And one thing I was proud to produce in 2008, and about ready to do a second one after Boston: A blog that became my own book