Friday, May 18, 2012

Dean says..."RUN"!

I've just been praying for this week to be over with. Work has become such a drudge and with the possibility of  so much going on and things to enjoy in the City this weekend I'm just done dealing with the crap and I want to escape to freedom.
I did get out for a run Last night. Had planned for a very short easy run but, it was so beautiful along the Marina it just seemed a waste not to just go the whole way to the bridge. I ended up doing 10 miles and I'm still a bit worn out from last weekend so for the rest of the week and until race day I'm done running. I may go out for an easy spin on the bike Saturday morning but, I really need to lay low and  it's time to build up the glycogen stores for Sunday.
Tomorrow's the beginning of the B2B Expo and one of the first guests/speaker is the one and only Dean Karnazes! I'm definitely taking some time off and well deserved...I never take any time off from freaking work!

Let's jump to Today! 
My plan was to get everything done early, take some time off of work and get my ass down to the B2B expo.
My goal was to see if this superhero "Dean Karnazes" was actually a reality or just a tall tale...

I got stuck performing an involved maintenance task and I was getting really frustrated that I may not be able to get to the expo on time. I finally wrapped it up and rushed down to my shop to pump up the tires on my Mission bike and get my lock and shoulder bag. I said goodbye to Cathy and took off down to City Hall Plaza.
I had visions of a huge crowd waiting to see the man and had trouble at first finding the Volkswagen booth where Dean was signing autographs. I caught sight of the booth and I was amazed at the 5 people waiting to have their runner bibs signed. I jumped in line and noticed that the people in front of me were moving along pretty quick. I hadn't gotten my bib number yet and I had nothing for him to sign!
At first I thought to have him sign my Dog Rescue shirt...Naaahhh!
Then it hit me!...sign my arm. Yeah that's the ticket. Then another thought hit the autograph! How nuts is that? BRILLIANT! Everyone knows I have a screw loose so shouldn't be a big surprise for anyone who knows me
Now there were two people ahead of me and I had to make a decision...

...Inspiration has been such an important tool in the direction my life has taken. I need a carrot on a stick, a target. I need competition. When I'm ahead of the game it just doesn't feel comfortable for me. I need to chase.

My mind and focus have changed so much since I made the commitment to run. This has been an epic part of my life and I need to remember these times and embrace them so that in the end I will have no regrets and know that I challenged myself and didn't just take the easy way through life. I want to be a winner and leave this life without any self loathing for not having taken a big bite of life...

As I stood in line I immediately took notice of the way Dean's interaction with people seemed so calm and friendly. They guy just exudes a very humble an caring demeanor. He seemed so small compared to the pictures and book covers I'd seen. He almost seemed meek. I then realized there really was something special about this guy and I felt like finding running, feeling drawn to this athletes life and accomplishments was purposeful in the direction my life is going. I want to be like this person. There's a lot to be learned from someone of his character. I think I would have to say is that most of all he seemed "balanced". He's brought it all together. Truth, beauty and goodness. Like a Buddha who has found the way. He inspires me.

My turn:

"Dean I'm a lifelong cyclist and just recently as this past January I have taken up running and read all your books, followed your blogs and videos. You truly have inspired me and I've been able to do things I've never dreamed of since taking up running." 
He just looked at me like no one had ever said something like this before.
"Thanks man"! he said.
"You look like a runner"! 
"Well" I said. "That's probably from all the cycling".
"Can you sign my arm"?
He tilted his head and said. "Really"!
I responded. "Absolutely, so I can tattoo your autograph"!
"Ha, ha...Really"?
"Do it". I said.
We then posed for pictures, some more small talk and I left and my head was swimming.
This guys for real, I thought.

I got my bib number and scrambled for the exit as I rolled up my sleeve tightly so as not to smudge the ink. I then got on my bike and headed up Polk street to see if any local tattoo shops were open. First I stopped at let it bleed and they were just opening the gates. They weren't ready for customers and said to come back later in the afternoon. I then went up two blocks to "In The Flesh" Tattoo shop. The artist had just had a cancel and was able to take me right away. As he set up I went to get something to drink and thought about what I was about to do. I put the negative thoughts out of my head and stayed true to my inspiration to do this. 
It's no piece of artwork but it makes up for it in meaning and a time in my life when I'm really happy to be on the road I'm traveling at this time in my life...

Life is beginning to split down the middle these days for me. Working life is time down the toilet and my aspirations are an elusive, enigmatic pursuit of which I never seem to have time. Isn't that the way it is for most of us though?
I must keep a positive attitude...keep my line.
Everytime I run and when I'm feeling like I can't go on I'll look down on my arm and Dean Karnazes telling me to "RUN"!...

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