22 + 23 = 22

Kicking off with big tips of the sombrero to our mates Ashley Schurman, Jackie Freeman, and my dear sweet Linda Kunasek!    And the other 25 in attendance at the USATF Level 1 Coaching Education certification in Lincoln.

For the benefit of running in all of Nebraska.  At all levelsAsk your coach if they are credentialed by our sport’s National Governing Body.  You don’t have to be a USATF Certified Coach to tell people how to run.  But if you are your athletes will understand and appreciate your dedication and commitment to the sport and to their training.

Linda came home impressed by those in attendance.  The New Generation of USATF coaches.  The Next Generation.  Those that will carry the message long after I’m retired.

I’ve been looking for a 5K.  Just itching now that Linda has joined her own new age group.  I really want to test this 60 year old body’s limits but I need a legit course.  I’ve got to be able to measure apples against apples and course certification provides that.

Certification is my first criteria for any race.  If I’m looking for a Real Test competition is a factor.   My old song and dance about a closed road course is in the top 5 as well.  Swag that matches the distance I run.  An event that supports Real Running and Racing, for all entrants, whether front, middle, or back, from here or there, my kit or yours.  How do you know Real Racing?  I’ll quote Supreme Court Associate Justice Potter Stewart “I know  it when I see it.”

No way to keep up with the multitude of runs this past weekend.  Leprechauns and Shamrocks and Shillelaghs.  And Shenanigans!

I noticed this recently, a RACE that is NOT A RACE unless you pay extra to be timed.   Same start line.  Same finish.  Same staff.  Same course.  $22 or $45 you still got the same thing.   How and why do you penalize someone because they are serious about their sport and effort?

My proposal is for charity events to charge the non-racing, participant only, the higher entry fee.  They are there to support your cause and won’t mind at all.  You enjoy so many advantages from our sport, please  share some of it back to our community!  An official  time without doubling the entry fee would  be a great starting point.

I call on all charitable running events to support, subsidize and advance the opportunities for all athletes (regardless of talent) because they use OUR SPORT!  You won’t lose your charitable base and you will be giving back to what helps your bottom lines.

Would you go bowling without your ball?  Would you shoot hoops with no rim?  Swim in an empty pool?  Hunt with no ammo?  Order an empty beer?   Read a wordless book?  Play poker with only threes?  Show up at a Black tie affair in your LuLus?

This is the ultimate example of our sport being used,  taking without giving back.  That is my opinion.  And gentle readers, a main impetus blowing my coals.  Racing has been co-opted and corrupted by fundraising entities that have nothing at all to do with running or athletics.  For many 22 + 23 = 22 is just peachy.  But not for all of us, not the Real Runners.