…and the GeekGrl thinks I should explain them right here in the blog. She thinks some people would want to know or would be interested or would understand better if I were to write out my reasons for wanting to run 100 miles again. I’m not all that sure. Like anyone my reasons are mostly my own, things I connect with because of who I am and what I have experienced in life. Some of the reasons are pretty superficial…You know I’m all about the race shirts and the buckles. Some of the reasons are based on the personal challenge and the feeling of accomplishment; it’s a pretty good feeling to know you can rise to such a task.
However, neither of those are sufficient to bring someone back to something like 100 miles, you get a buckle and you get to brag…whatever. You meet the challenge, ok so you met it and now nobody can say you didn’t or couldn’t because it’s right there in the record books. No, for me, my reasons run much deeper. My reasons are both spiritual and philosophical and are well represented by one simple line from my original race report “I had long since ceased to be myself and had simply become another animal in the woods trying to get home.”
This is not about self-abuse, believe me, I am not into that. A couple years ago I did a 300K brevet and after I got off my bike I genuinely believed I had done some permanent damage to my body and I have never ridden anywhere near that far again. I also have nothing for which I need to repent and if I did a simple apology would be far more efficient.
One hundred miles puts me in my place…in a good way, it puts me in context, a small man in a vast universe of time and space. In my humble opinion most people walking this earth could use similar perspective but who am I to judge. As far as I’m concerned I’m just doing my part to get my head on straight and my perspective in line with reality and I think I have a lot of work to do. I get a sense of peace, a sense of the order of things and a greater degree of inner peace and compassion.
This is the direction of my life. Those who have known me best and known me longest know this has been my path. I have found another tool to take me where I’m going and there is really no time to spare.
My next journey will be the Arkansas Traveler 100, October 4th and 5th, yes…2008, yes in about 4 weeks.