This is week one, day 4 of your first recovery week. Please take the day off.
So today, I am going to tell you a story.
Frank Shorter was the first American to win the Olympic marathon since Thomas Hicks won in 1908. Frank Shorter won in 1972. In that race, in Munich, Frank Shorter, who had won the Fukuoka Marathon in 1971, was not feeling good with the slow pace in the hot, humid, and dusty conditions. So, around 9 miles, Frank Shorter took off. It was the earliest that he had ever taken off in a marathon. In that race, he was facing some of the finest marathoners in the world. Shorter later said that he felt good when he increased the pace, and he just kept at it.
By the time Frank Shorter reached the stadium, he had a couple minutes on the field. He could have broken the Olympic record of two time Olympic champion, Abebe Bikela. But he did not increase the pace, out of respect.
Frank Shorter, Fukuoka 1971, photo by Asahi Shimbun
Frank won the 1972 Olympic marathon, and took silver in the 1976 Olympic marathon. He also won the Fukuoka Marathon four times, which was then the most important marathon in the world in its heyday. Frank also set ARs at 2 miles, 10,000m and the marathon.
What many do not know is that Frank Shorter ran the first 18 miles of the Olympic Trials marathon in 1968, while still a college athlete. I met Frank Shorter in 1974, at the AAU Cross Country in Belmont, CA. That year, Frank had finished 8th, after having won 4 straight AAU Cross country champs. Frank was very nice to myself and my three buddies. He was really nice to us during his cooldown, and I was always grateful for his kindness.
Keep it easy today.
Thursday, June 16, 2022, Take it easy, do a walk, read a book or take a bike ride.