"Lazzari's Sports Roundup" - - - - 3/23/13

Having been an avid runner for over 30 years, I can vouch that I'm part of a unique fraternity; call it a group of people who enjoy a "sometimes-hard-to-explain" physical activity. Combine a good dose of insanity with some passion and you'll get an idea what running is all about. With that in mind, here some things that may provide evidence that an individual is a TRUE runner:

*you're always in search of the perfect running shoe--even if you already own six pairs
*you believe there is NO such thing as a smelly pair of running shoes
*you're aware that a "runner's high" feels better than any alcohol "buzz" that one can experience
*you've argued at length with someone about how walking and running AREN'T the same type of fitness undertakings
*you've spit into the wind while running--and paid the price
*you've hit "the wall"
*you've purchased a pair of running shoes that looked SO good/SO cool that you actually waited a LONG time before wearing them
*you've been undecided while trying to choose between two pairs of running shoes--and ended up buying BOTH
*you're familiar with EVERY type of roadkill species
*you DON'T need to wear headphones in order to enjoy a good run
*you've run in outdoor temperatures as low as minus-20-degrees and as high as 95 degrees--and EVERYTHING in-between
*you understand WHY a person who has run for years could never pursue a career as a foot model
*you're keenly aware that running with a hangover is more difficult than winning the lottery
*you've run on a track and have SWORN at walkers using the inside lane
*you remember the best pair of running shoes you've ever owned--and still wonder why they're not manufactured anymore
*you consider "carbo-loading" an art form
*you've given directions to countless drivers while running--but never admitted to them how they upset your stride and training pace
*you TOTALLY understand why a bad Achilles tendon can truly be someone's "ACHILLES' HEEL"
*you've had a shoe come untied during training runs and/or races--and spent at least five minutes wondering whether to stop and tie it or just keep running
*you've saved the front end of your car over the years--just by being SO familiar with the many potholes that appear along your running route
*you've "shadow-boxed" during a run
*you know all about a man named Jim Fixx
*you've been fully aware of a banana peel in your running path for a few days--and STILL managed to slip on it at some point
*you've hummed/mouthed the words to "Gonna Fly Now" numerous times during training runs
*the phrase "JUST DO IT" has gotten you through MANY training runs
*you've felt GREAT going into a run--then lumbered through it
*you've felt LOUSY going into a run--then had one of your better ones in a long time
*you're more afraid of BLISTERS than spiders or snakes
*you fear SHIN SPLINTS more than the IRS
*you've been asked by someone WHY you run. Your answer? "If you have to ask, then you'll never know"
*you've accumulated enough t-shirts from races to clothe small countries
*you're familiar with the term "conversational pace"
*you've given certain hand gestures to drivers who've honked their horns at you--even though they may have been your friends
*you DISDAIN the idea of a stationary bike being a good alternative to a training run
*you've cheered on finishers at the end of a road race after finishing ahead of them
*you value "negative splits" more than some of your most prized possessions
*you'd risk foreclosure on your home in order to purchase a pair of running shoes that significantly reduces the risk of injury
*you value Vaseline almost as much as GASOLINE
*you've canceled dinner dates and/or nights out with friends in order to get in a good training run
*you totally understand the passion possessed by the late, great Steve Prefontaine
*you have a dart board in your family room with a picture of Rosie Ruiz on it
*you've been nearly hit by cars at least 100 times--and are convinced that at least HALF of the drivers never even SAW you
*you've taken time off from work just to get in a good training run
*you've traveled to warmer climates in the winter just to get in some good training runs
*you've run in 90-degree, humid conditions on a main thoroughfare (i.e Route 34 in Derby, CT)--complete with swirling sand, fumes from huge trucks, and narrow shoulders
*you'd rather be NOWHERE else than the aforementioned, main thoroughfare
*you've based the overall quality of an entire day simply on the quality of an early morning training run
*you're familiar with EVERY type of inflammatory "-itis" known to mankind
*you're convinced that Gatorade has saved your life on one or more occasions
*you've had some of the best conversations ever--WITH YOURSELF--during training runs
*you're totally blown away by the accomplishments of one Robert "Raven" Kraft of Miami Beach, who has run 8 miles a day for over 38 consecutive years--WITHOUT missing a day
*finally, you understand that your DNA is a LOT different than that of the non-runner living next door to you
Keep runnin', folks.......
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