White Rock Marathon

The Dallas White Rock Marathon: I Dare Ya

Wanna do something to shake up your routine, alter your waist line and even change your life?

Run. The. Rock.

Probably a little late to get in shape and properly train for Sunday's MetroPCS Dallas White Rock Marathon, but you can also "participate" by merely being a spectator. Organizers expect 7,000 marathon runners (22,000 overall) for this year's 26.2-mile course that will start/finish in Fair Park. But they also anticipate even more than that to line the course watching.

Bands. Food. Christmasy weather. And supreme athletic achievement.

Do it for yourself. Or, if nothing else, do it for the kids. The children at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital, that is.

I've been skydiving. I went 10 days without food. I even continually run a blog despite a daily barrage of nasty comments.

But nothing was more challenging than running The Rock 19 years ago. To me, the discipline to train into good enough shape to run a marathon was just as difficult as actually running a marathon.

When I crossed the finish line on December 2, 1990 - my time was 4:29, nothing great - it was exhileration, exhaustion and then ... done. Haven't really had the urge to run another one other than a brief, failed flirtation for editorial content purposes.

Maybe next year?

There are always great, inspirational stories that arise from The Rock. One of my favorite/most chilling occurred on a visit to TSRH with some Kenyan runners.

As the runners took a tour and were introduced to a 4-year-old patient with deformed legs twisted underneath him like pretzels they recoiled in disbelief and almost horror.

The reason? In the village where the Kenyan runners grew up, they didn't exactly have the wherewithall to properly diagnose, treat or deal with similar birth defects. Abnormal babies, they said, were treated differently.

So what'd they do?

"We took them to the river," said one of the runners matter-of-factly. "We drowned them."

Happy running.

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Richie Whitt
Contact: Richie Whitt