Being on The “Extended Podium”

The most recent podcast from Trail Runner Nation interviewed the author of a funny satirically true post about ultrarunners called 18 Dumb Things Ultra Runners Say & Do

Social media is full of posts like this.

“21 Ways You Know You’re a White Suburban Teen”

“5 Movies You Love if You Grew Up In The Nineties”

“Weird Habits of College Dropouts Who Turned Into Successful People”

The stereotypes go on and on and although I am not helping combat this cycle, I cannot help but read the ones that apply to me.

Back to this podcast episode, I am not an ultrarunner (yet) so it was an introduction to the sorts of things I might see soon on trails.

Instead of someone who sell outs to Nike, we sell out to Salomon.

salomon-running

Cleaning eating…instead of throwing anything into your mouth because you’re starving.

Focusing on “skyrunning” because ultrarunning is not legit enough.

skyrunning

This list was great!

A few that applied to my were:

“What is the drop on that shoe?” I’ve been trying to go more minimal to work on ankle strength.

“I am so proud to be an Ambassador for this race” LOL I didn’t know this was a thing but I’m already guilty of it!

“I got on the extended podium” This is what I want to talk about today.

In the article, the author cites this example of claiming “I got 5th place” or “I was in the top 20”. His argument is that this is a sport where not everyone needs a trophy. They went into a discussion about the Western States belt buckles and how everyone who finishes within the time period gets a buckle. I believe that because that race is so competitive and because one must qualify to get into it, everyone who finishes does deserve a belt buckle. The problem the authors discussed is the trend for 5Ks and other races to give out buckles or other awards just for completing the race.

westernstates

In my opinion, by doing things like that, the race is devaluing the accomplishments of the top racers. You get a tee-shirt with race entry and I that’s enough. The everyday Joe who enters for fun does not expect nor does he need a trophy. That is not the point of the race.

I joke with my sister that I only do races for the swag…but let’s be honest, I do it for the free beer afterwards. [Kidding]. This past weekend, there were no medals and we got a gray cotton tee-shirt. The post race food was frozen so we didn’t really get to enjoy that. It was a cold, hard race. Last weekend, I got a technical tee-shirt, a medal and a voucher for free hot breakfast after the race.

You know what, I enjoyed the cold, hard race so much more. It was about the experience of the race, not the medal.

Ok, now for the extended podium. In both my races, I did not finish in the top 3 (or top 20) of all racers. However, I did finish second and first respectively in eat race in my age group. I think this is my sort of extended podium. Last week when people asked how I did, I said I got 89th or whatever it is that I got. With this past weekend however, I said I got 89th again…then followed it up with the “I got first in my age group!”

1

Why did I do that? I think it’s part of my way to make myself sound more legit. I feel like I deserve to brag a bit and acknowledge my accomplishments. I think I get that luxury for my first few races. However, as racing season picks up, and people get more competitive, I won’t say my age group award. Let’s be honest, I doubt I’ll get too many more with all the Spring racers. I have decided to just be happy God allowed me to finish the race and give me many more.

What is your “extended podium”?

Tell my your favorite running stereotype.

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