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Tag: Durante Family

20 Years Of Broad Street – America’s Largest 10 Miler 

Broad Street was my first jump in distance.  The transition from 5K to 10M, then half marathon, marathon, and the rest was history.  It was a gateway from the casual 5K/10K to a “Can I even finish?” distance I took on 20 years ago.

What went right?

I had a blast!  I didn’t have any goals for this race.  I ran to the best of my ability for that given day and course. I had just raced the Philadelphia Trail Marathon the week prior and felt the effects.  I would never miss one of these limited events with my family as we are near the “tail end”.  The doorway is beginning to open with my children. Both my son(7) and daughter(10) are signed up for their first 5K.  They are about to embark on their running journey.  In the podcast from Derek Sivers, I was really moved by this one section where he talks about the importance of raising his son right:

If you do this right, it passes on for many generations —A kid that’s raised really well can pass on that generosity of spirit, you know?  Somebody that’s raised ignored might pass on that scarcity of spirit, you know?  

Derek Sivers – Tim Ferriss Podcast

My parents have been great role models for me, and I hope to pass on the lessons they’ve taught me to my own children. They’ve shown me the importance of perseverance and hard work, no matter what challenges may arise. These are valuable lessons that can help shape the character of future generations.

What went wrong?

I had a marathon the week before that I cared more about than this race.  I gave 100% effort in that race, and this got about 80% effort.  I mostly recovered but knew that it would limit my output. I was tight in my hips and could still feel it, but I still felt nearly recovered. It must have been close to 10 years since I last raced back-to-back weekends.

What I would have done differently?

The best race will be when you don’t care about the outcome.  Future me will try harder to remove myself from outcomes.  I know I have the best performance when I don’t care about time. It’s not like I didn’t try, but I just know my times will fade as the years add up.  I won’t break records as I get older.  I am fine with that.  What I can do is make better videos, live in the moment, inspire my children, and motivate them in their fitness adventures.  The finish time could be 1 hour or 2 hours, how fast you get down broad street really doesn’t matter, or make you any more interesting of a person.  The race is set up to reward those in the front to start first, but that’s it.  I don’t want things to go faster, I just want to experience them deeper, or differently. Maybe I should start with the pink coral? 🙂

The more time goes on the more I detach myself from outcomes and connect myself with those I can share the experience with.  If you focus on outcome you could miss out on the sights and sounds of the race.  If you watch the video I shot I cared more about the feel of the race vs time. Honestly, I don’t think I couldn’t have gone any faster anyway.     

I look back on 20 years of racing with fond members of my family, pre-race dinners, subway rides, and bib pick-ups.  I won’t boil down a race to seconds on a clock when there is history and emotion that runs down Broad Street.  Mile 8 is my street, Ritner, the street I grew up on, and 2 miles from the finish.  I hope I have 40 more finishes, a few more with my family, and my children.  To some, it’s just another race, but to me, it was that spark that lead to a lifetime of adventure.  

Here was my PoV video from the race. My camera died right at the end…

How I ran my fastest Broad Street time in 18 years

What went right

This was the first time I had access to a gym to do stretching and mobility leading up to the race.  I used two things primarily, this video 15 Minute Runners Flexibility Routine (FOLLOW ALONG), and this piece of equipment Technogym Flexibility I liked going to the gym to work on mobility because I normally skip that stuff. Doing it at the gym removes all distractions.

Mentally, I felt like I was in the right headspace.  I had a lot of good workouts and had taken 2nd place in a small 5K, this was a huge confidence booster.  I also just heard on a recent podcast about acknowledging the pain, don’t try to distract yourself from it, actually feeling it, and thinking about it.  Listen to where is it coming from and acknowledging its existence.  Why would you do that?  Because most try to ignore the pain, they listen to music to distract from it. It will only keep screaming for attention like an impatient child! I have 3 of them so I know how that sounds. 🙂

What we run from only stays with us longer. Find what you are afraid of most and go live there.

– Chuck Palahniuk

I listened to the pain and tried to live in it.  I felt by doing this I was more respectful of what my body was trying to tell me.  I did listen to it and it was not ignored, but I realized that is where true work begins in the race. 

“Lately, my main strategy has been to stay in it and like fully embrace how much it hurts and how painful that experience is because, in doing that I think it just reminds me that I’m doing something by choice and that, and to get to that physical state where it hurts that bad means, you know I’ve worked really hard to get to that point and to celebrate kinda being in the pain cave.”

– Courtney Dauwalter

I am reading the book the Courage to Be Happy when I came across an interesting concept. It was this idea that “history is written by the victors.”  That same logic goes for the version of yourself today, and whatever story you have told yourself.  Whatever version you are today was the result of wars that were fought inside your mind and events of your past.  That story you tell yourself is what drives your decisions.  The past doesn’t have to matter, the question is, “What should I do from now on?”  So the story I was telling myself is that I should be getting slower and I will be getting weaker.  That didn’t back up all the work I put in this year.  Maybe when I am 60 or 70 that might be the case, but I know a lot of people who are faster and older than me.  A part of me has learned that when you drop your fear of failure and your tension of succeeding you can truly run without limits.  I really didn’t care what happened and I was just grateful to be there with my family. I know there are only a handful of these races left see the tail end. I had 2 fig newtons and some coffee right before the start and got in my corral. During the race, I think I only grabbed 1 cup of water off a spectator.  

What went wrong

I had a complete camera fail.  I tried this new rubber wrist mount and it created footage that was too shaky.  I had to delete a lot of the good clips I recorded, but I did learn how to use this new program to save footage that is too shaky. View the clip in full screen to see the difference.

This will be very helpful for future races where I record my runs for my video journal. There’s a saying that is, “Nothing is learned when everything goes right”. I had no physical issues in the race, everything just felt good and the weather was perfect!

What would I have done differently

Not much, I liked adding the week of downtime for mobility, stretching, and hydration. It makes you feel like you are still doing something.  

Final Thoughts

The mental side of these races always becomes a big factor when it gets painful.  I focused on it instead of trying to distract myself from it, I acknowledged it and didn’t try to ignore it.  Basically, I just listened to my body.

The mind and body are viewed as one, as a whole that cannot be divided into parts. Tension in the mind can make one’s arms and legs shake, or cause one’s cheeks to turn red, and fear can make one’s face turn white. And so on.

– The Courage to be Disliked

I got to run one more time with everybody in my family and for that I am grateful.  I stopped caring about time, I stopped caring about pace, and the magic is once I did that I ran my fastest race…  WTF?

The race through my eyes, running the streets of my youth: