WOW! Thoughts on the Open Letter

24 03 2008

*blushing in Denver*

I’ve gotten SO many private responses to the open letter!  My personal feeling is that strollers, dogs, and headphones have NO place in races … but anyone who has read my flames on the Marathon Walker Yahoo Group knows this!  As you all picked up from my flip, purely economic statements, I’m pretty freaking fed up feeling like I’m just a dollar sign and like I’m discounted because I’m ‘just a walker’.

I’ve got no problem with family races or bringing your dog, cat or iguana to race with you … but I don’t have any interest in participating in them.  I think it’s fun to see the kids go nuts at their little sprints, but I’m not interested in being run up the back of my leg by a stroller.  Dogs being dressed up by their owners for holiday events … okey dokey … but then hand them off to someone not in the event, because your lab or bull-dog is just another hazard out on the course.

When it comes down to it, I feel ripped off!  I feel like I should be handed back all the race entrances for every event where the directors didn’t bother with their own rules.  Starting the dogs and strollers allegedly at the back doesn’t work, guys.  It’s simply playing games.

I’m a walker turning racewalker turning more and more competitive.  I still have the same thought process, however, when it comes to races.  A race is a race. It doesn’t matter who comes in first or last because it’s a competition.  Maybe as we’ve moved from the first running boom (which I was a runner in) to the second (filled with Galloway/Bingham joggers) something was lost …. respect for the spirit of competition … not in the front of the pack, but in the back.

We’ve got a lot of problems in the world of sport: drugs, cheating, and the rest.  I am so sick and tired of people who cheapen even the lower level of competition by their selfishness.  Let’s face facts – the majority of my friends are runners and a whole hell of a lot faster than I am or I was! They’re starting to understand what it’s like back in the pack.  None of the speedy sneakers I know even consider bringing dogs, headphones or strollers to races – even if they have them. 

Personally, I get really bored silly going around in circles and that’s probably why I love the distance road courses.  Since I love to compete, I want to get better in the short courses also … however, I don’t think it’s fair that I feel like I’ve got to protect myself in races – and this does include 1/2 and full marathons where it’s weaving around headphone addicts.  My experience isn’t exactly ruined, but it’s really dampened especially since I know that I’m following the rules set out … both in pamphlets and for racewalking!

The very sad thing is that whenever I’ve written things, I’ve gotten slammed by people “Oh Lis, you’re just on your soap box again.”  BITE ME!  What’s got to happen?  Why do Ihave to keep getting angry?  I don’t have to … I just want to compete, get better and keep pissing off joggers.  My friends with their sub 10 minute miles all know they’ve got targets on their backs … I’m still slower by a couple of minutes … and have a whole lot more traffic and obstacles to get through to catch up!




2 responses

29 03 2008

Liz…you weren’t talking about Mike’s pull cart and my jogging stroller full of oxygen tanks were you?

30 03 2008

You guys can have strollers and carts!

Kerry’s eyes are Audi the Guide Dog’s
Your and Mike’s Lungs happen to be external in carts with wheels!

How about this — No strollers with kids in them. If they have oxygen tanks or stuffed animals, they’re OK! Just no clobbering people or trying to run them down!!!

Love ya Lyn!

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