The oldest track & field blog on the internet

Monday, July 09, 2007

Back Online

Last week we packed up the camping gear and the Miller High Life and headed off to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Only a few track/running-related things to report; for one, a beautiful and challenging 12-mile run through Cades Cove. Another is the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad.
I'm not a "railroad enthusiast" (read: train nerd) but after my first Amtrak trip to Chicago a few years back I was hooked on simply riding them. This train excursion was gorgeous but the running relation is oblique.

We all had an array of stories told and read to us when we were young, and each of us had a few which made a big impression on us. The two that had the most important impact on my worldview were Dr. Seuss's Horton Hears a Who and Watty Piper's The Little Engine That Could; the latter was uplifting and the former was terrifying, but each encouraged an attitude of continued effort in the face of uncertainty and possible abject failure. This idea of "gumption", to borrow a word from Robert Pirsig, is essential for long-distance running since months and years of work precede any significant improvement.

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