Omni Runs August 24, 2012

Omni Runs Friday recap

So far this week I’ve managed to run 18.5 miles out of a goal of 24 miles. I’ll probably do 3-4 miles at lunch today and then run a few more miles on Saturday. I’ll be breaking the 10% rule again but these last few runs have been (or will be) at a slow pace and for only about 3 miles. Last night I noticed for the first time in weeks that my leg did not hurt.

Lance Armstrong

lance Armstrong,cycling

This morning on the news I heard that Lance Armstrong has dropped his fight against the US Anti-Doping Agency (USADA). I haven’t really paid close attention but this battle has been going on for years. I’d like to think that Lance is innocent and he is just the biggest target for people to go after. I’d like to think that as an elite competitive athlete that he would not want to win at all costs.

The news reports say he has passed hundreds of drug tests over the years. I’m hoping that he was not using some super sophisticated regimen that no one could detect. The technology keeps advancing and the testers are always one step behind. For Olympic athletes I believe they keep their blood samples for 8 years so that newer testing technologies can go back and test for things that may not have been seen initially.

I’m not naive, I know people cheat. At these elite levels the slightest advantage can mean the difference between the yellow shirt and finishing back in the pack. That yellow shirt, or gold medal, can mean millions in endorsement deals and lifelong fame. But if you cheat and get caught, your reputation is gone and your achievements are forever tarnished.

These advanced cheating technologies have not been studied by the FDA or other scientists. Someone may have figured out a better way to bond oxygen to your red blood cells, but do they know the long-term effects on your health? Men have taken steroids before and then found out that their balls shrunk up to about nothing. I’m pretty sure some people have died from taking steroids.

Maybe when you get to the top levels of competition, winning is the only thing in mind. Getting to the finish line first is all that matters. Living to see your grand children or even the ability to have children are not considerations in these situations.

As a casual, amateur “athlete” I cannot conceive of paying this high price to win. For people like me, like you, like us, we win just by getting out there. We get better by putting in the effort we can afford to pull out of our busy lives. Sports and winning are not our lives. And hopefully sports will not be our deaths.

Again, I’m not naive, but I sincerely hope that Lance has nothing to hide and is just tired of the fight. However, I’ve read that he is the most competitive person you will ever meet. He also has all the money in the world, so why give up the legal fight?

What do you think?