Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Ultra Insane

Earlier this year the Triathlon Club of San Diego hosted a showing of Dean Karnazes' film Ultramarathon Man. Dean had run from San Francisco to San Diego for the event - I think it took him 3 or 4 weeks to do it. When we asked him why he ran, his response was "have you seen gas prices lately?" As Dean explained to the crowd the details of some of the endurance events he had done, we all gasped and our jaws hit the floor. In a theatre full of crazy people, Dean stood out for being crazy. There were a couple of serious ultra endurance athletes in the audience and I'm guessing they were grinning as the rest of us were being shocked. One of them was David Goggins, who is probably the most intense endurance athlete I know of. Both he and Dean have completed the Badwater ultramarathon, which is a 135 mile running race through Death Valley and up Mt. Whitney - and it makes Ironmen cringe in fear.
Anyway, I guess David Goggins had decided that Dean's run from San Fran deserved reciprocation - and he ran to the event himself. I don't remember the details, but I believe he ran from Chula Vista to Encinitas (33 miles) for the movie - and then ran home in the dark afterwards. I was introduced to David briefly as he and his friend were putting on their lights for the long run home. The guy is physically amazing, after one look you're not surprised at all to learn that he runs 150 mile races. He was very quiet, polite and understated, he wasn't looking for attention. He was also very intense.
Here's a couple of videos about Mr. Goggins, I thought they were pretty cool. Watching these makes me feel better about my triathlon addiction - there's still a long way to go before I reach this level of insanity.

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