At what point is it acceptable to say “I have arrived as an ultrarunner”? Or rather “I’m an expert”? Is it a certain number of lifetime miles run? Maybe the number of races you’ve entered? Or finished? Does performance have anything to do with it? Should mid- or back-of-pack runners be ignored because we’re slower than others? Must you complete a certain distance? Should certifications be prominently involved?
Running Long Since 2013
When I started this blog back in . . . 2015 (?!?!) . . . I had only been running consistently since 2012. The following year saw me step up to the marathon distance, but I was only 8 races into my ultra career as I launched Chasing10k. I wanted to warn those who stumbled into this corner of the internet that they should take what they read here with a high degree of skepticism and this slogan seemed to succinctly do that.
Fast forward to 2020. Those words are still there on the blog’s header, but now seven years have gone by. It’s possible that some visitors might think the wisdom of Jurek or Corbitt has seeped into my brain by this point so I needed a way to quash that toot suite. Thus was added the asterisks. Surely no one would put any credence to a slogan with that after it.
Now 10 years have gone by. . .
Can my slogan now stand alone? Free and clear to mean that Here Resides Endurance Knowledge? Part of me believes that yes, I finally know more than a thing or two about running long distances. I mean I just wrote a race report telling people how they should run one of the hardest hundred milers on the east coast. Another part of me cringes and wonders if I should be allowed to write such things. I’m not elite. Sometimes I’m even the last person to finish a race. Many others have much greater accomplishments to their credit. I’m just a guy.
You could say that I’m a little conflicted.
Ultimately, I’ve decided to leave the asterisks. While I think I do have real endurance Knowledge that the ultra community can benefit, I also know that there are many things I’ve yet to figure out. [so very, very many things] It’s good that people don’t take this blog as the gospel of Phil. Everything here should be questioned. Maybe some of it will work. Maybe most of it won’t.