Sunday, February 15, 2009

Duel In The Sun

I just finished the book Duel In The Sun - about the 1982 Boston Marathon in which Alberto Salazar and Dick Beardsley battled head-to-head for the last 13 miles and finished within 2 seconds of one another.

I'm not an avid reader - I struggle to get through my copy of Runner's World each month (perhaps I should stop reading so many darn blogs and get back to print media?) - however, I end up getting sucked into 2-3 books a year and fly through them.

I really enjoyed how this book alternated between chapters devoted to the race itself and the biography of the two runners.  I learned a lot about Alberto Salazar (who I remember hearing about when I was growing up) and Dick Beardsley (who I had never heard of before reading this book).  What was remarkable was how this one race impacted the careers of each of the runners - in this case both runners "left it all out on the field" and neither runner was able to recover from the effort they gave that day.  I find it remarkable that this was able to happen to world-class runners.

It was a great read, however, I doubt I'll be able to take much of this book into my own running.  First of all, I doubt I will EVER qualify for Boston.  Perhaps I would be able to run Boston as a charity runner, but based on my current times and horribly inefficient running form there is really no way I see a BQ in my future.  Also, I can't see myself "leaving it all out on the field" like these guys.  Not to say I wimp out all the time, but I'm pretty cautious.  My performance in the Parks Half Marathon last year kind of sums it up for me...if today isn't my day, take it easy - there will be other races for me to look forward to.

My running schedule this week will hopefully be an easy 3 miler Monday morning, a 5 or 6 mile pace run on Tuesday morning, an easy 3 miler on Thursday morning and then a long run on Saturday morning.  Hopefully I can stick to plan this week.

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