Buster Benson in Seattle is doing 10 things including…

run a half marathon

1 cheer


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Buster Benson has written 4 entries about this goal

I'm sore today

Here’s what the finish line looked like yesterday.

Well, I did it! I ran the half-marathon yesterday. Now, from to my sponsors, I have 4 drinks, 3 hi-5s, two new friends, and two volunteers to drink my patented Blue Scream. Also, according to the polls, people were predicting me to come in at a bit over 3 hrs… but I actually came in at 2 hrs, 1 min, and 41 seconds. That comes out to about 9:23/mile. No spring roadrunner!

But, that’s 1214th place folks! (out of 2535 males) Or, 191 out of all 403 males in my division (I think that means males between the ages of 30 and 35).

Reasons I enjoyed this experiment:

It was an extraordinary problem. I love creating problems for myself that cause me a bit of stress and anxiety and which force me to rise to some new challenge. Most of my self-experiments have been mental or self-helpy. This was a break from those in that it was a physical challenge. When I create an extraordinary problem and then solve it, or complete it, it forces me to think of myself a bit differently. I surprised myself, and maybe others.

I loved the mob aspect. There’s something invigorating about being part of a group and realizing that you sort of belong to it. Yesterday morning, in the freezing rain, I found myself in a group of like-minded masochists. And the entire city was catering to us, cheering us on, closing off streets, providing us water and Gatorade, telling us how we were doing, celebrating our awesomeness, etc. I felt very pampered and spoiled in a strange way. We were running on highways, throwing trash onto the sidewalk, creating traffic jams, and yet people still felt obligated to tell us how great we were. Not only that, but amongst the runners, everyone was friends. We chatted, we screamed in the tunnel, we laughed at the absurdity of Madison’s hill.

Technology. I learned about all the weird technology they use to track time. You wear a chip on your ankle and step on mats along the course to get your time. Then, the same day of the race, you get results on their website. It was also fun documenting the race via flickr, twitter, and dodgeball. At one point, while I was sending a photo to flickr, someone asked me, “Are you watching the game?”

I think I might start running more, just for fun. I do enjoy it for some reason. I think that there’s a pocket of stress hidden in my body that only gets released when I’m running. Sometimes I’ll feel stressed out and I can sense that a run will fix the problem. And a side-effect of this is that my brain comes up with crazy ideas while running. It’s an easy way to self-regulate my mental state. And people are more accepting of regulating your mental state with exercise than with drugs or alcohol. I don’t know why. They both have day-after symptoms (hangover/soreness), they both make you feel weird, you are more likely to fall down and hurt yourself when you’re doing either of these activities versus not doing them, both types of people tend to hang around other types of the same people. But, for some reason, there’s not a whole lot of overlap. Maybe I’ll be the bridge between the alcoholics and the sporty types. That would be fun.

Last practice run last night (5 mi, 45 min)

I did a total of four practice runs for this. The run is this Sunday, and I’m feeling pretty nervous about it. I’m sure it will be fine, but there’s always a chance that I’ll wake up that morning depressed, or unmotivated… and those things always turn into coughs and sore throats and mystery pains in the ankle. So if I try to pull that off, this entry is a reminder to my future self that I’M ONTO YOU and your stupid tricks. I’m going to run this thing, and finish it, and it will be fun and easy. See you on the finish line future self!

Week two of "training"

Well, I ran once during week one… a five mile run alongside Lake Union and through a bunch of busy streets. It killed me… my spirit was broken and I immediately came down with a three day sickness most likely psychosomatic so that I wouldn’t have to run again anytime soon.

For week two, I decided, why not, to run again!

This time I took a helpful hint from Ivan and took the bike trail through Myrtle Edwards Park and beyond. I didn’t realize it just kept on going. It was an overcast day, I decided to try a more leisurely page, and just enjoy the run… thus not sabotaging my will to do the half-marathon in November. The result was a super pleasant run… and I ended up running 9-minute miles… which surprisingly is quicker than I ran the 5 miles last week. Lesson: enjoy the run, and take a nice scenic route.

Seattle Half Marathon on November 26th

I’m thinking about running this. It’s a little last minute (I haven’t started training yet and there are only 2 months left), but Daniel got me thinking about trying a somewhat different kind of personal challenge than I’m used to. I ran in high school but since then haven’t really done any runs longer than 3-5 miles. But 2 months is a long time, and there seems to be a training group at my gym that might help me get ready for this.

Buster Benson has gotten 1 cheer on this goal.

  • ario cheered this 7 years ago


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