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Penguin Journal

June 11, 2000

Dateline: Babson College, outside of Boston, MA

I tell folks that I have the greatest job in the world... IF you like to travel AND if you like to meet new people. These past few weeks I've been getting more than my share of both.

I arrived home from San Diego and RnR3 late last Tuesday, which gave me all of a day to get ready to take off last Thursday for Boston and the Penguin Flight School at Babson College. This was the third year for Flight School at Babson, and it was THE BEST.

There's more info about the schools at other places on our website, but the short description is that they are weekend workshops on effort based training. Coach Roy Benson, THE authority on heart rate monitors and training, was the clinician. As always, his straight-ahead manner and deep understanding of the art and science of running were a treat for everyone.

It's hard to pick out highlights from an event like Flight School. I enjoy all of it: the initial nervousness of the participants, the dazed look on their faces when Coach Benson first starts talking about percentages of maximum and anaerobic thresholds, the smiles when they begin to understand how using a heart rate monitor can help them, and the remarkable bonding that inevitably occurs. Amazing stuff!

This year we had a chance to watch a track meet in a nearby town. This wasn't JUST an all-comers meet featuring all the local hot shoes. This was a qualifying venue for runners trying to get a trip to the Olympic trials this summer.

We had the best time cheering for ALL the participants, from the first to the last. We screamed at the top of our lungs for the final finishers, and adopted them all as penguins. [even if they WERE running a 4:30 mile!!]

The last event was a solitary team running a 4 x 100 relay. The race was one lap of the track, with each runner going 100 meters. When the first runner took off, we all gasped. He was SO fast, we couldn't believe it.

Then the SECOND guy blasted off... and the third.... and then.... and THEN the anchor guy started running faster than I have ever seen ANYONE run. He was so strong, so powerful, that we all just sat there stunned. It was beautiful. The team’s time for 400 meters [about 1/4 of a mile] was around 42 seconds. It was magnificent.

The magic was that all of us felt like runners. We knew that no matter what our speed, we all shared something in common. We were runners.

I'm off to Anchorage this weekend. I'll file my report on Monday.

Taking it to the streets.....




Penguin Wisdom
The person with a 35 minute 10K PR is only a faster runner than the person with a 55 minute PR. No more, no less.



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Last Updated: June 25, 2000 11:13