Monthly Archives: May 2015

BITE ME

Go ahead, I’m used to it.  We’ve got a bumper crop of mosquitoes smack dab in the middle of the Elkhorn and Platte Rivers.  Little bloodsuckers.  My skin is too sensitive for “mosquitoe dope” as my dad used to call it.  Solution is to wear long sleeves and pants and get used to it.  The mosquitoes in Texas are the size of the finches I watch busying themselves every morning, making them only slightly less tolerable.  The rabbits are a different story.  I regularly pop those voracious vegans as they hop towards my garden, one down a million to go.  What makes them different from other conejos is they are the size of small dogs.

Thanks to Mike Hayek (rhymes with kayak) Jones for pointing out that Concordia University won the NAIA National Championships without scoring a single point in the running events, the win coming on the substantial shoulders of the field crew.  Related, UNL will send 5 thinclads to the NCAA National Championships (discus, jump, jump, jump, jump.)  Say what?

Starting this morning with Sam & Jackson.  I worked with them for 7 weeks last year and got Sam in good enough shape to finish 6th in the 3000 at the National AAU Champs for his age group.  We’ll be working on moving up spots for this year’s champs in Virginia Beach.

And I’m picking up some gems from one of my adult clients.  Jennifer is co-founder of Convergence Coaching, “We are committed to make a difference for our clients, driving organizational and behavioral changes to enhance performance, improve teamwork, and inspire.”  She drops the occasional light bulb moment on me, her latest about unrequited forgiveness.  Good stuff.

Peace, Love, Glow Run.

 

 

REDDER

How about that Pete Ricketts?  Making sure Nebraska remains the reddest, most conservative, the hell with everything else, we’ll decide what’s good for you, state above the Mason Dixon Line!  And the young generations of Nebraskans exodus to more friendly climes continues.

I’ve predicted elsewhere to scoffs and guffaws and I’ll tell you here and now.  Unless things change here in the Good Life, Council Bluffs will exceed Omaha’s population within the next 30 years.

Some good guesses to yesterday’s quiz but only Gary Dougherty remembered Greg Carlberg was the very first Honorary Member of my old club.  Why you are probably asking.  Because he was the first native born Nebraskan to run a sub four minute mile (3:59.6).  Down in the Astrodome on an oversized track in the 70s.  His Husker bio lists him as Nebraska’s first All American and won the 1970 Big 8 Cross Country title covering the 4 miles in 18:56.

Brock Angelos had a great guess picking Nebraska Wesleyan Head Coach Ted Bulling.  Which reminded me that it was Ted who was the 2nd Honorary and Kregg was actually the 3rd.  Thanks Brock for the jog.  Others that were graced with the designation during my Reign of Terror: John Fey,  Ronn Baker, Roxi EricksonGary Julin, and Ron Olsen.   Jim McLatchie and Glen vd. Westhuizen added later and I believe that fills the roster.   Ron and Roxi  were True Blue and were among the first athletes to join Nebraska Run Guru Elite.

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My dear, sweet Katie graduated Millard West on Sunday.

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And so did Linda’s Tom.  A fine young man.

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And this is my sister Cindy (59) with her own two daughters.  My nieces (L)  Amanda (39) and (R)  Samantha (40).  Cindy was a grandmother at age 39.  She has the Lindgren spirit, laughs with gusto and don’t take no mess.

 

 

 

 

THINGS HEATING UP

Summer and the racing is about to ratchet up a notch or two.  Go out and get it.  One day you’ll be glad you did, you’ll have your own tales to tell.

I trained for 25 years on the Gulf Coast of Texas.  Heat and humidity?  Yawn.  Almost always had to wait until the heat of the day to get my runs in.  Purity of Sweat.  Nothing like it.

More on races.  This weekend’s Aksarben Village Glow Run will feature some of the hottest road racers in the country vying for one of the most coveted titles of the year.  Dathan Ritzenheim, Meb Keflezhigi, Ryan Hall, and Fernando Cabada will be staying at the Bar None tonight and tomorrow, final tuning for the Friday Night OTown Glowdown Showdown.  On the women’s side Desiree Linden, Ethiopian Mare Dibiba, and Kenya’s Caroline Rotich will reprise their Boston Marathon battle on the sweet streets of the Aksarben area.  Man, nothing I love more than a spirited glow run.

Congratulations to Concordia University’s Kregg Einspahr on his first NAIA National Championships!  Kregg was also named Coach of the Year.  Well deserved Kregg.  As a history lesson for those that could care more and those that couldn’t care less, Kregg was the 2nd person to receive Honrorary Membership into my former club as recognition for his contributions to competitive distance running.  QUIZ:  Who was the first Honorary Member into Team Nebraska?  First correct response gets a TOS (tip of sombrero) right here.

 

 

BOYS TO MEN

Where to start?  With the Boys.   Last weekend’s Nebraska State HS Champs at Burke.  Race of the year- Men’s 1600 with Ty Hansen (4:13.71) of Fremont using an inspired run to catch heavily favored John Nownes  (4:13.90) of Creighton Prep.  Hansen captured my men’s MVP of the meet by also winning the 800 meters (1:52.63) over Millard South’s stud Reno Law (1:53.73).

For the young ladies my MVP goes to Millard South’s Katie Spencer.  Her 10:31.58 in the 3200 besting silver by almost 25 seconds.  She also took the gold in the 1600 with a fine 4:55.18.

Big tips also to Mason Grinvalds of DC West.  Class B 800 meter champ in 1:58.96.  His mom teaches with Linda, and is a single mother.

Now the Men.  Man is more like it because Colin Morrissey alone had the juevos to step up to the line at Omaha’s Biggest Road Race of the Summer (Bar None).  Only he shares my conviction that a Man should be winning Boystown 5 Mile, not the boys.  -My how far we have dropped from the days of yore when this showcase opportunity was not dismissed.-  I would pleasantly and sincerely invite our talented neighbors in the Blue and Yellow from across the Platte River to come  over next summer and give a hand.  But back to Colin (2nd 26:07).  I approached and thanked him prior to the start for being the Only Man in Omaha.  Rode alongside him for the first 4.75 miles, watching eventual winner Austin Post (25:59) and wunderkind turned human-after-all SethHirsh (3rd 26:09) give chase.  Colin had 7 seconds on Post at 2 miles, Hirsch another 4-5 ticks back.  Seth caught Austin around mile 3 and the pair whittled the lead to just 3 seconds by 4 miles.  A Horse Race!  Around the keyhole and only a quarter left when Post pounced with his decisive move.  As a student of the sport it was a thing of beauty watching his powerful stride pull away. More of rare Omaha mano a mano was to come in an instant.  Seth rode Austin’s vapor trail past Colin but, my voice echoing in his head “Be A Man” spurning him to find another gear and retake the lost strides and take 2nd overall by a slim :02.  Great racing by the top 3!  Fourth was John Nownes and fifth was Reno Law.  Four of the top 5 finishers under the legal drinking age.

On the women’s side our Amber Sargent (2nd 32:29) made the drive up from Beatrice to have her ass handed to her by winner Lennie Waite (29:02) of Austin TX.  My call for competition last week had to reach pretty far eh?  Lennie finished 10th overall.   (I see a whole list of local “studs” well behind her in the results.  Another prompt for the fellas in blue and yella to get over here in ’16.)  Team Nebraska did have two women in the race, masters studette Theresa Gosnell (5th/1st 32:59) and Jen Freeman (4th 32:44).  While winner Waite was enjoying a drink and a bagel, Abby Knight Einspahr (3rd 32:25) was leading Sargent and Freeman around the keyhole that signals about 2:00 of running remaining.  Abby, Amber 4 seconds back, Jen 2 seconds behind her.  Another horse race!  I urged Amber to catch Abby.  Urged Abby to continue to do Good Work.  Urged Amber to not let Jen catch her.  Urged Jen to keep it up and make it a race.  Thank you Abby and Jen for being competitors and appreciating the Heat during the race, and for being my friends afterward.   Class.

Jessica Pape (6th 33:18) and 49 year old phenom Stacy Mangers Shaw (7th, 2nd 33:22) placed 3 NRGE women in the top 7.  Giddyup!  Just a heads up that Stacy turns 50 early next year, look out!  Clean.  Fearless.

Pete Kostelnick completed a 160 mile week recently getting ready for Badwater.  Aye Caramba!

Speaking of the Lincoln Running Co. Racing team.  Occassional member (r-i-n-g-e-r) Tanner Fruit of Colorado Springs finished 9th overall at the prestigious Bolder Boulder 10K yesterday in a fine 31:30, 5:05 pace at 5430 feet.  Look for him to help LRC challenge for the Mkt2Mkt title again this year!  Just sayin.

IMG_0247Austin Post.  Currently runs for UNL, MW grad.  photo courtesy of GD Photography

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This is why I appreciate and covet Colin.   photo courtesy of GTD Photography

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It was our ladie’s first effort since their spring marathon.  These three, and others (Michel!  Bree! Ashley!) are champing at the bit.  We’ll be setting up their summer/fall competition schedule soon, could not be prouder of these athletes.  photo courtesy of Mandy Sue & Lucky

 

FEAR’S THE DEAL

My biggest enemy might surprise you.  It’s the lazys, not the crazys.  My prime motivator.  Fear of becoming lazy.  Fear of becoming too comfortable.  You stop growing either way.

I don’t at all consider myself one of those Type A personalities.  Contradicts my need to continually expand my palate.  Strange juxtaposition.  Willing to work until I drop- just as willing to sit on my ass to prove a point.  But always needing something to bring that edge of fear, of failure.  Or of too easy success.  If you knew you were going to win every race you entered it would become a bore.  If guaranteed success was the only outcome life would become maddeningly repetitious.

A lot of motivating trepidation as we approach the beginning of our new chapter, market gardeners.  If the Bar None looks like a blue print for a slam dunk, there’s a lot of nerves behind the scenes.  Anxiety prompting twice the attention to every detail.  Hosting our first open house this weekend and everything must be ship shape.

Life has never been easy.  It never will be.  It never should be.  Challenges.  Difficulty.  Fear.  Opportunities to learn and grow actually.  Excellent exercises in Real Life.  

COME GET SOME!

Almost a year ago since the Nebraska Run Guru Elite women showed they were a force.  The 2014 Boystown 5 Mile was one of my favorite local races since arriving here in 2001.  The battle up front seared into my archives.  The entire field chasing Jessica, including her mate Michel Davy.  Me in my usual position astride the “Official Bike” designation, best seat in the house.  Michel would use the final 100 meters to finally pass Jess, inspiring as hell.  Top two women in the biggest “Road” race of the year in Omaha.   As an encore, we’ve got a little surprise up our sleeves for this coming Monday’s edition.

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Michel Davy and Jessica Pape prior to last year’s gun.  All smiles, all business.  Receiving my final instructions on who to beat; Everyone!  These girls fear no footsteps, no reputations, no crazies, nothing.  They run with the hubris of their coach and guiding spirit.  Think not?  Come get some!

THE REAL DEAL

USA Track & Field has two missions in this order- 1) Develop Olympians.  Never forget this.  It is first and most important no matter who tries to tell you otherwise.  2) Member Services.  Yes, serving the membership.  Sometimes going above and beyond in that service.  Doing what is right even if it takes a little extra effort.

I did that for 10+ years.

Flashback:  2005 Twin Cities Marathon.  Serving as our USA Marathon National Championships.   And for the first time ever, as our USA Elite Development Club Championships.  As WLDR Championship Chair and Elite Develoopment Club Council member I had fought hard to have the Club Champs component included at Twin Cities.  One of the conditions of approval was that I personally hand calculate the team scores.  Which meant that I had to go to www.usatf.org/memberships and verify current memberships as well as club affiliation.  Sitting off alone where no distractions could cloud my math, working “under the gun” as race results were being posted and the Club Champs were being hailed as a major bragging right (My Team Nebraska would finish 4th) .

Flashback II:  When I first founded the USATF Nebraska Association Long Distance Running,  I was able to convince The Lincoln Marathon the program was worthy of awarding prize money to our membership.  Race leadership was cool with that, asking only that I take the reigns and go through the list of finishers and reconcile that to those with USATF memberships.  Which I did.

Remember point #2?  Member Services.

One of the reasons I love this column is that I Do Declare.  Without misinformed or uneducated rebuttal.

Our Stacy Mangers Shaw won the Nebraska Association Marathon Championships.  Both Open and Masters.  She was our association’s 2014 Masters Grand Prix winner.  Has a USA Masters Half Marathon National Championships medal.  Has been a card carrying USATF member every since we’ve worked together, these many, many years now.  Stacy is The Real Deal.

But wait!  This from Hayley Sutter (I think she might be on Peter’s Champs committee?) over on our Nebraska Assoc. LDR Facebook page:  ” I will allow Peter to make the final determination; however, her credentials were never submitted to the Grand Prix Committee or any team representatives prior to the Marathon. Multiple requests and reminders were made for this information.”

HEAR THIS!     You may not, can not, and will not, institute “rules” regarding the conduct of association business.  To remind again, this is a Member Services organization.  To decide that you will impose conditions for inclusion, outside of our national governing body’s regulations, in our association championships is folly and won’t be tolerated.  Stacy’s membership is the only thing necessary, period.  To insist that condition of being scored in competition includes being available to association business information via a friend, or facebook, is silly and untenable.  And shows a lack of effort on the service end.  The one viable argument that could have saved Hayley’s decision was never used.  Our association LDR email blast capabilities.  Every member has an email address and that is the only  bona fide means of communication regarding association policy.  

What?  You think I make this stuff up?

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This is a fight I’ll take up.

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I have to admit I let Jess slip through the USATF membership cracks.  She was the first Nebraska female at the Lincoln Marathon but hadn’t renewed her membership.    Unlike Stacy, I can’t say a word in her defense.

 

 

THE DEAL WITH REAL

Running is hallowed.  It should be approached with a reverence.  Being one of man’s most basic  attributes it should also include after all,  just a touch of irreverence.  I think that pretty well sums up RGS readers.  Damned serious about the art, individualized enough for hubris.

I’m back to very little running.  Four days a week for the last couple, 11 and 17 miles.  Savoring every stride.  Only unbuckling the mental straight jacket for ever so brief stints.  A recent Saturday had me running with Twin Rivers YMCA Freedom Run Race Director Blaine Schmidt.  On his home course.  With a couple of “hills” disguised as overpasses.  It was my first run in 10 weeks and the challenge of 4.5 miles was both exhilarating and daunting.  Blaine too just returning from injury.  My 14 years seniority and the initial overpass presented the first degree of separation.  He on up ahead, Linda next, me trailing on the hind one.

Out into the countryside surrounding Valley, you may as well be 100 miles from Omaha.  Both runners ahead looking strong and confident.  Me finally going to the Only Thing I Know to Be Real.  And the gap began shrinking.  The second and larger of the two overpasses a mile and a half up there.  Calculating every stride.  Every breath.  Every heartbeat.  Every moment.  Honest.  Real.  I’m with them now at the base of the hill, determined.  Exhorting as I rush past, “Attack the hill!”  My alarming approach wakening Blaine and giving Linda smile.  He not yet fully aware of what’s inside my head, she knowing and happy for me.

To the crest, I gave it my best.  My vainglory lasting but an instant.  Blaine, with his 6’+ frame striding downhill, now pulling away again.  A patient Linda, never more than 3 steps arrears going up, choosing her kill point one step beyond the apex, twin braids flying behind  as she passed us both.  And away they were.

But here’s the Deal With Real.  You either Have It or you Don’t.   Knowing as I watched them pull off that we were roughly 1.25 miles from completing the circuitous route.   If you’ve got it then you know what happened next.  If you don’t, then you won’t.

Question:  IS THAT ALL YOU GOT?

Rebirth.  Rejuvenation.  Rejoice:  NO!  I HAVE MORE!

Another query:  WILL YOU GO?

Determination.  Confidence.  Ecstacy.   YES!  AND NOW!

I worked my way back up to them and that last mile of my first run back answered every question that had been rolling around in my head for the last 10 weeks.  You can take the boy out of the race but you can’t take the race out of the boy!

 

NOM DE PLUME

A real gem of a poem arrived in yesterday’s inbox, thanks to guest writer Tim Dooling for the submission:

a different path
(by i c daily)

oh, what is this inside of me some thing that needs direction
to force my way to destiny
just so i can say i won

when that’s all said and done
and i think of the good and the bad
was it worth the cost to be number 1
and take for granted what i had

asking the light and the dark this question
i search and search for the answer
and find there is no solution
so i choose a different path to find her

 

LIFE WELL LIVED

Having supper with a medical professional last night.   His bag is to bring comfort and save lives.  Noble and I admire the hell out of that profession, even if I couldn’t bring myself to that table, too squeamish.

Discussions turned to what’s really important in life.  A Life Well Lived was our final deduction.  Well Lived as described by the the host, the only Real Judge of our daily efforts, ourselves.  A Life Well Lived.  What more can you aspire to?  And again, it is YOU that makes the final determination.  Not the crazy lady, not the angry man, not the insecure or weak, not the strong, not the politicos, not the confused, not your family, not your friends.  You.

This then has been my guiding light, to Do Well and Live Well.  I’ve succeeded beyond my wildest dreams and failed even bigger.  Human after all.  Had powerful shadows (the dark side) infiltrate my work, worm their way into my community, my daily efforts and psyche.   Didn’t handle it so very well but still I survived all that.  Because Right makes Might.  And so, on I go.  If you pursue righteousness, even in failure, that elevates not only you, but the entire kindred of man.

I’ve studied the human condition as an imperfect researcher.  Seeking Truth.  My eyes most often turning inward when contemplating what I deem troubling, recognizing that all of our parts, bit as they may be, contribute to life as we know it.  I own that.  And it makes me a more complete person.

That road goes both ways though.  When I see what is good I hope to have had some small part in it.  Hoping my contribution, with all its imperfections, end up with plus signs instead of minus.

I used to swear by the statement that if I had to live life over I’d change not a single thing.  Maybe I’ve finally grown up.  There’s a lot of things I will do differently next time around.

Peace, Love, Reincarnation.