Maxims of Long Distance Running

I ran the Mercer Island Marathon. Here’s what I learned.

Ten Maxims of Long Distance Running

  1. People who tell you that the hill you are climbing “ends just around the corner” are filthy liars.
  2. People who stand on the sidelines and yell “Run! Run! should be forced to do so at gunpoint
  3. People who tell you that “it’s all downhill from here” are filthy liars.
  4. If you insist on continuing to run while you try and drink your dixie cup of water, you are not only a damned fool but you will shortly be a damp fool.
  5. People who stand at the finish line and yell “Nice try!” to the finishers should be boxed about the head and shoulders.
  6. I’d much rather run a marathon than be the guy who sits at the microphone at the end and reads off the names of the fifty-seven gazillion participants, one by one, as they cross the finish line.
  7. People who stand on the sidelines and yell “All right, stay together!” should be pulled aside and asked what, exactly, they mean by this. They should be asked if they understand that this is a race, and it would be a terribly boring one if everyone “stayed together.”
  8. People who stand on the sidelines and yell “You’re doin’ great! You’re lookin’ great!” are filthy liars, and doubly so.
  9. This is not what you want to hear from the person behind you:
    Okay, so here’s my worst race story. I was in this race in Belgium, and I was totally out of shape so I was stuck at the back of the pack. And running right in front of me was this overweight guy wearing a single-piece flesh-colored Spandex bodysuit. And I couldn’t get away from him — I couldn’t run any faster, and if I went any slower I’d be walking. So I just had to look at this guy for mile after mile. And then … he started to sweat…

  10. People who tell you that they ran the Mercer Island Marathon are filthy liars. (It was actually a half-marathon.)
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