My blogging has not set any records as of late but in my defense (weak-ass excuse) I have been a bit busy running and even doing some coaching. I’m also attempting to do ALL this while working the equivalent of a FULL TIME JOB! (ask me about this inside joke anytime)
Marshfield Pirates T&F Distance Team
In 2011 I managed, and believe me it took an effort, to avoid the marathon scene for nearly two months. I ran 52 marathons in 10 months to make up for my sluggish start. Some might think 58 marathons in ten months is worthy of a world record. Larry Macon has run over 110 in year. I’m juuuuuuust a bit short of that record.
My 2012 races have spread out a little more evenly and have, admittedly, been a struggle. I have looked at the last six days of marathon racing in 2011 as the cause of my DLS (Dead Leg Syndrome). Regardless of my physical letdowns and my mental racing struggles I managed to win a few races this year. Some would say, myself included, it is a record. The local Coos Bay paper thought enough of my running record to write up a story about this record.
To call it a ‘world’ record would depend on your stance. Critics would say that only Guinness or some official governing body must ratify this decree through committees and a slew of red-tape. I think my time is better spent running rather than convincing critics that, despite my slower-than-world-record-pace marathons, I have won more overall official marathons than anyone else…at least on this list. ARRS-Most Career Marathon WinsI’m sure there will be some wise crack about hotdog eating marathons or TV watching marathons.
Kobayahi's World Record
This leads me to my next point as we should quickly move past the bastardization of the term “marathon.”
While the definition of the marathon distance is rather precise, what entails an official marathon race might not be as clear to some. I did some research and most official organizations view a marathon race as a race of 42.195 kilometers or roughly 26 miles and 385 yards comprised of at least 5 official starters and 3 official finishers. Please note that hotdogs and remote controls were not mentioned. Most rules also include that the race must be advertised and open to any eligible competitor. Fortunately every race that I won was advertised, open to all competitors and each more than covered the minimum competitor requirements. As much fun as running in a race like Chicago seems to be, getting elbowed and physically assaulted before the race is no longer my idea of a good time.
Let’s face it, at 41, or any age, I would never win Chicago or any other major marathon. Even running and winning one of the mega-marathon races with the fastest marathon time in the world does not constitute a world record. Just ask Geoffrey Mutai about his 2 hour 3 minute and 2 second marathon time. Thanks to officials, some of whom have never run a marathon much less a Sub 3 hour race, his time is the fastest in the world but not a world record. It does, however, count as a win!
Downhill or uphill, large or small, muddy or dry just let us run as fast as we can on any given day and keep the rules simple. Races will still be won and lost only by those who toe the line when the clock starts to click. Unless of course the alleged winner hops on the subway or rides in a recreational vehicle to the finish line. Let’s not diminish the win or the time by putting an asterisk next to their name. If we are going to get carried away with asterisks can we also put an asterisk next to the races that are severely uphill or exceptionally muddy so people will know why times were very slow without hearing about us whine about the conditions? I mean Pikes Peak is a real ass-kicker. Maybe we could just stop running these more difficult race courses to make our overall times look better at first glance? I don’t see Pikes Peak losing interest anytime soon.
As for my running, I will happily enjoy my time atop the Most Career Wins list however brief it may be. I might even use the adjective “world” when describing the record. We have several other sports in this country that use the term “world” while describing their season winning championship despite the fact that no other country has a team represented. The NBA and NFL include the words “world champion” on trophies, t-shirts and hats. While there may not be teams in my overall win category the world is certainly well represented. Does this give any more credence to calling it a world record?
I should just go ahead and print the t-shirts and baseball caps and tell the critics to kiss off.