Wednesday, March 19, 2008

LTOB Guest Editorial

Less Than Our Best is dedicated to providing the most relevant, intelligent coverage and discussion of the world of running that we care about. Many times our small voice in our small corner of the world is just not sufficient and we are forced to bring in guests from the world of running who have a unique insight or experience. This is one of those times.
Today our guest editorializer is:

2007's Median Male American Marathoner

I would like to start my guest column by thanking the guys at Less Than Our Best for recognizing my achievement and, in a way, the achievement of ALL the great people out there who finished marathons this past year. We did it!

A little background on myself. My name is Ted Higgins. I work as a claims adjuster at Lexington Financial in the great state of Kentucky (Go Wildcats!). I drive a gray 2002 Saturn S-series and have a beautiful wife, Irene, and two lovely daughters, Samantha and Jessica.

As I'm sure you know by now, I was recently named "America's most average marathoner" by marathonguide.com for running my pr (that stands for personal record, most runners just say "pr" though, it's like your best time you ever run) of 4:29:52.00.

I know what you're probably saying. "Hey Ted, you have to be crazy to run 26 miles in under 5 hours!" Well, as I always say, "I think all runners ARE a little crazy, myself included" : ) Haha.

All joking aside, though, there were some fabulous people out there who helped me along the way to reaching the elusive 4:30:00 mark. The love and support of my family and coworkers, for one. They had to listen to me always complaining about how much my knees ached.

On the other hand, I think I helped them out by coming in every morning and reminding them that I am going to be running a marathon. I would also tell them how much I have been training and how hard the training is but I do it anyway. It's funny, I remember that they would always tell me, "Hey Ted, you have to be crazy to run all the time like that!" I would always reply that I think all runners are a little crazy, myself included ; )

My training partner, Katie, is one I would especially like to thank. We would meet every Tuesday and Thursday before work to go on a five miler together. I would wake up and peel myself out of bed at 6 in the morning and my wife would say, "Hey Ted, you have to be crazy to run 5 miles with Katie this early in the morning!" But then I would say, I think all runners are a little crazy, myself included ; D

After a while Katie and I started meeting every other week night for some runs and to talk running because I just can't talk running unless it's with a real runner like Katie (btw she's run 4:32:43. She's a Rockstar!!!!!! GOOOO KATIE!!!!!). We would go on our run and then head over to the local Applebee's and, I'll admit it, have a beer with our fettuccine alfredo.

Once we started to get really dedicated, we started meeting on weekends (yeah, if you want to run a fast marathon, sometimes you HAVE to run on weekends!!) to do our "long runs" (these are the runs that are the longest in length compared to your other runs). We would meet in the park, run, and then go out for karaoke at the Bennigan's down the street.

Katie is so much fun. And smart too. We would laugh and talk into the wee hours of the night. Not just joking and runner talk either, we would really help each other out with "life stuff" as we used to call it. That is what having a training partner is all about.

For instance, when my wife left me, Katie was the first one I turned to, mainly because we were sharing a hotel room bed and she was laying right next to me (we had to share a room the night before the marathon because there just were not enough rooms available). But I also turned to her because she was my best friend and lover.

But anyway, thanks America for recognizing me today for my great accomplishment that I worked really hard for. I love you all and my advice to all the aspiring runners out there: as I always say, "you have to be a little crazy to be a runner, myself included : P

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