If you are going to do something, Live It, Love It.  With your heart and souls (soles).  Its the only way to guarantee that there will be no regrets, whatever the outcome.  “I gave it my all, my very best, nothing more I could have.”

As my knee continues to pitch me fits with its impression of a Joe Cole (my favorite magician) balloon figure, it gives me pause and cause to reflect and celebrate.  “In It To Win It!”  That was and will continue to be one of the guiding principles in my life, inside and outside of running.  But an unexpected sense of calm  has accompanied my ever expanding time away from running, no melancholy baby here.

How?  Why?  Because I always gave it everything I had to give.  Wouldn’t accept anything less, from myself, or the hundreds of athletes I’ve worked with.  Gave it my all.  I don’t think that everyone can or should utilize the same paradigm.  Ah, but those of you that do, regardless of ability, you are the Real Runners I’ve so often talked about.  The rest, those that insist its simply about the journey, not the end result, well hats off to you and yours for being able to celebrate mediocrity, something that never appeared on my plate nor will ever appear on my menu.  If I go down broken it will be with the knowledge that I was true to mine own self.

I much admire Gary Dougherty.  A local stud before I moved here, struck down by a debillatating injury, now unable to run for, what is it Gary nearly 3 years now?  And yet you don’t hear a single moan from him and in fact his dedication to the running community seems to have only grown.  He had a different tack than me, always insisted that running was just part of what made him up, although he did give 100% in his time, don’t doubt that for a moment.  Pretty much the exact opposite of me and my singular philosophy.  Yet today we share a mutual satisfaction with what we gave and how we gave it.  We also share a similar pain that unexpectedly (inevitably?) solidifies our friendship.

So here’s to you if and only if you are Real.  To yourself.  And In It To Win It.


Gary Dougherty.  Father of Ndorfnz, expert photographer, family man.  Keepin’ it Real.