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Running Times Magazine

My Best Advice

By | Running Times Magazine, Selected Essays | No Comments

It’s not unusual for me to get messages from friends, former students and strangers asking for help with their running. When faced with these requests, I’m happy to hammer out a content-free pep talk, sharing slogans and koans that have helped me in the past. Or I just say, “You can totally do this,” even if I have no idea whether it’s true.

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Running Jerusalem

By | Running Times Magazine | No Comments

Try to imagine a more challenging city to govern than Jerusalem. The place has been sacked, attacked, captured and besieged. It’s been divided. It contains some of the holiest sites for three major religions. Whatever your politics, you might agree a person would have to be nuts to want to be mayor of such a vexed and contested place.

 

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Petraeus Syndrome

By | Running Times Magazine | No Comments

RachelFor most of my running life, I’ve had male training partners. Partly it’s because I like poop jokes. Partly it’s that competitiveness rarely goes subterranean the way it can with women; it stays loud and in your face. Partly it’s because it’s fun being the only girl in a group of boys, nudging my way into conversations that become more textured after a couple of hours on the trail.

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The Joy of Steroids

By | Running Times Magazine | No Comments

I love running. I love running even more while on steroids.

A handful of years ago I was pre-riding the course the day before the World Ride and Tie Championships. My trusty steed, Pip, an obstreperous, flea-bitten gray Arabian, waxed a little less than trustworthy and dumped me into a heap of what turned out to be poison oak.

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Outgrowing SMOs

By | Running Times Magazine | No Comments

When I first started running, I was in it for the clothes.

I wanted those T-shirts, always too big, too ugly, too cotton/poly blended, too heavy, to wear, but collected and curated as if they were first editions of rare books. They inspired me to want to race more.

Not long after I began, I started snagging what I came to call “SMOs,” Shiny Metal Objects. At first they were ribbons and medallions from tiny little 5Ks where I came in third out of four women entered in my age group. It opened up a whole new world of obsessive assemblage, one where the collection strategy involved more than just paying an entry fee.

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The Fast Guys and the Pretty Girls

By | Running Times Magazine | No Comments

The fast guys and the pretty girls sit at a table and their laughter rises and forms a canopy above them. They talk to and about each other; the rest of the room, for them, is empty, though it is crammed and packed with others who do not glow and glisten. For the fast guys and the pretty girls, time is fat and slow and they are not. It will, they believe, always be this way. They are unfit to imagine any alternative.

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