And I know that I will need to explain. This realization has come to light within the past few weeks.
This past Saturday I stopped by Luke’s Locker and got to catch up with my buddy Patton Gleason. Patton runs the training program for the Luke Locker store in Plano and for the Whiterock Marathon ran the 24 miles to the start line and then ran the marathon. He is a great guy and always says that we need to go run together, which is then followed by me saying, “Patton you do realize I’m not fast and that are you sure you want to run with me as I will serve as an anchor.” His normal reply is something like, “hey, you need to throw away the watch…we’ll be two guys out enjoying a great trail run.” So to end our conversation on Saturday, Patton lets me know that there will be a group of guys meeting out at Erwin Park at 0600 for a great trail run. OK,OK, OK,…I’m in!.
What Patton failed to tell me was that all the other guys are Boston Marathon Qualifiers! With the trail being flat and not very technical I realized that is was going to be futile to hang on with these gazelles. They waited at the end of the first 8 mile loop for me to finish up. While we were standing around talking, we saw a group of about 6 high schoolers running through the park. One could quickly tell that they were good runners. Lean, long strides, keeping an incredible pace and making it look effortless. The line of runners meandered through the meadows and around the trail. It was beautiful to watch. They were Gazelles. It was awesome!. I then realized…”hey Dave, YOU ARE NO GAZELLE!”
I thought back to Bandera. The first 10 miles is all climbing and descending and really technical to boot. I ran with 4 runners during those 10 miles, holding my own and many times on the downhill passing and leading the pack. When the trail leveled out at about mile 11…zoom…they were gone. I realized then…not gazelle…more like a Mountain Goat. This was confirmed by my ultra marathon running buddy, Marshall King. We run about at the same pace. Tuesday he went to do hill repeats with some fast runners. He told me while on the hill, he was the one leading the charge, motoring up the inclines…another mountain goat.. So I end with this: I run more like the first picture instead of the second picture. God made me a mountain goat…and I love it!