Wednesday, March 26, 2008


This Sunday, I'm running the Inside-Out Half Marathon in Cary. I'm looking forward to my third attack of this challenging course.

The last time I ran it, in 2006, I listened to tunes on my iPod. I finished in 1:56:57. Led Zeppelin helped me over that last hill.

But I cannot listen to tunes this time.

According to the event website:
"RRCA rules and our insurance do not allow the use of iPods, MP3 players, headphones, or other personal listening devices during races. While you may be accustomed to using one during your practice runs and prefer to run with one, we must ask that you honor our policy. Runners violating this policy will be disqualified from the race and banned from participating in the event in future."

What kind of boneheaded rule is this? Has fear of litigation robbed event organizers of their common sense? Whatever safety hazard is posed by running with an iPod has to be eclipsed by the hazards inherent in racing 13.1 miles! I mean, we sign a waiver! What next? Will we be denied the right to wear fuel belts? Will technical shirts have to meet esoteric standards?

Listening to tunes helps me disassociate from the discomfort of physically pushing myself. I keep my iPod at a volume that allows me to hear what's going on around me. Why deny me my iPod during the race? Stupid, stupid, stupid!

Rain or shine, I have the same goals I always have for a race:
1) Finish
2) Finish feeling good
3) Finish faster than the last time I ran the event
4) Run a PR

Four for four would be great! I'll be happy with two for four.

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