From Pete Magill: “The Local Track No Place For Runners”

I thought about this essay during my track session today as I dodged flying soccer and lacrosse balls, along with people sauntering into my path or otherwise annoying the shit out of me.

6 Responses

  1. Ah. You and Pete live somewhere entirely different from me. No community support (and no tax dollars) for K-12 sports, I can run on a nice, pockmarked, empty, unfenced track any ol’ time I want. I just have to fight with the geese who like to hang out on it.

    I think I’d rather have your problem, though…

  2. Wow, it seems that things are pretty tough in LA. I ran on B’ville this morning, and it was me and a woman walking in lane three. I happened to include 30 minutes there early Monday night and it was wet and me and three women. But I would not go there on a nice, early evening, particularly given the lane 4 issue. Eastchester is pretty bad, and it has “No Walking in Lanes 1, 2, or 3” on the track four freaking times. I had one old Italian woman dressed in black as if still in mourning for Mussolini curse me for having the temerity to ask her not to walk in the inside lane.

    Generally, I’d say 90% of the people who you ask to move to the outside lanes do so, although for the life of me I can’t understand why people would walk on a track. It’s the other 10% that are the problem; I once had one call the cops on me at the old B’ville track.

    Best bet: White Plains or Mamaroneck (although the latter has the problem of people watching baseball standing in the inside). Best line I ever got: “Hey, take it easy, you’ll have a heart attack.” (Mount Vernon’s wonderful new track is locked.)

  3. I shared the track once with cheerleaders practicing for the local 4th of July parade. This resulted in my getting punched midway through my interval!

  4. […] Alas, although there was one woman on the track when I arrived, it was not her. So I ran the tempo — which went well – and it was just me and her for the first 13 laps, and I had the place to myself for the final lap. Julie appears to have arrived later. She writes: […]

  5. I was running near Crater Lake once and started thinking about mountain lions and wishing I was on one of your ubiquitous high school tracks. Now I’m not so sure!

    I’d be measuring the distance of lane 6 (ours is 437 metres) and using that, rather than dodging soccer balls and SUV mums on the inner lanes.

  6. Think of the events on the field as scenery. Errant walkers, that is different.

    I saw your finish at the Colon Cancer 4 miler, by the way. I was early for the 15K and watched the finishers, and I thought, hey that looks like the “Races like a girl” blogger (albeit with a different color hair.) And I looked at the clock and thought, wow, that was fast, and I wonder if she placed.

    So great job. I have never won an award for anything running related, and envious.

    I have same issues on the BRP. Last run I had a Dad riding a bike behind his son. Nice. Except the Dad was going so slow to stay with his son he had to weave back and forth across the path to keep his balance. That was annoying. So I passed them. They then made it a game to catch up, which they did. That lasted about 2 miles. They thought it was funny when I had to stop when they hit a “hill” in front of me and their speed went to zero and had to walk the bikes. I became an unwitting participant in a game they were playing. Catch the Runner.

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