Thursday, May 17, 2007
Meeting a Running Legend
I meant to blog about this earlier. Then life got in the way. I met running legend Dick Beardsley at the packet pickup the day before the George Washington Parkway 10-Miler a few weeks ago.
He's a very down-to-earth and engaging guy. Lots of Midwestern charm and humbleness. And the guy is whippet-thin. Standing next to him, I felt like an overstuffed arm chair.
He's also like the cat with nine lives. Beardsley's been hit several times by trucks -once while running - got caught and mangled in farm equipment, fell off a cliff, became addicted to painkillers, went to rehab and got clean, then became a reknowned speaker.
As his online bio says, his life reads "like a Greek tragedy with an upbeat ending."Beardsley's still a damn good runner. A couple of years ago, he ran 2:43 at the Napa Marathon.
You probably know that Beardsley was one of the main subjects in the book, "Duel in the Sun," which recounts the 1982 Boston Marathon, in which he and Alberto Salazar duked it out. I bought a copy, which he graciously autographed.
Not that I have stars in my eyes, or anything ...