Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Articulate Athletes - Craig Curley

On my long runs I like to start out listening to an episode of Competitor Radio with Bob Babbitt and Paul Huddle. They interview amateur and professional runners, cyclists, and triathletes of all ages and stages of their careers/hobbies. What I've come to notice is that these athletes are incredibly articulate, thoughtful, deep-thinking, and usually quite humble. Do they only interview the most well-spoken athletes, or is the thoughtfulness developed due to the somewhat solitary and soul-exposing nature of these sports? I suspect the latter.

On my drive back from Pennsylvania to Virginia on Monday, I listened to an episode with Craig Curley, a 24-year-old runner and member of the Navajo Nation, who won the Columbus Marathon in October in 2:19:01. Something about this young runner really struck me - his perspective, values, work ethic, maturity, and clarity. He has a refreshing naivety from growing up in a very small and extremely rural community in the Navajo Nation, yet he is in many ways a wise old soul. The episode is well worth a listen.

He talked about the Columbus race, and I loved this excerpt:
“I went into that race without being scared. I was like, I know how it feels, I know how it feels to train for a marathon…there’s a specific pain for a marathon, and I got used to it, and I remember that feeling. I trained every day. I practiced with that feeling of pain.” 
I also believe in becoming acquainted with a certain amount of pain in training (in the appropriate types of runs, etc) and that we make a choice each time we race, whether we do so with fear or with courage. I will definitely be following the career of Craig Curley and look forward to hearing more from him.

I hope Bob and Paul crank out enough podcasts to keep me going through the next 10 weeks or so of long runs!! Keep 'em coming!