The Sunday Read: Olympic dreams – and dollars

Another week, another Sunday Read. I apologize for all the long links this week. But the link shortening service I normally use, bitly, has become increasingly unreliable since they went to a subscription model; this week, after I inserted the links into my post, none of them would work. Previously, it was only one or two.  So, please bear with me as I look for a new link shortening service over the next week. Otherwise, as always, enjoy the read.

He works hard for his money: Olympic marathoner Reid Coolsaet gets a profile from – of all places – MoneySense Magazine. Sure, they talk dollars and cents with the Hamilton, Ont. native, but it’s not all about the bucks. Some relatively interesting anecdotes and quote quips are woven in among the financial talk. If anything, though, the story hints at just how hard it is for a professional athlete to make a living in Canada: Coolsaet relates that a 2008 injury not only cost him a chance to go to the Olympics that year, but subsequently deprived him of his sponsorship money. The story is here: http://www.moneysense.ca/2012/07/23/the-payoff-prepare-for-the-worst/

Next time you’re running on the dreadmill, take a moment to pay your respects to William Staub. He is the man who made the treadmill available to the masses, commercially marketing the device for the first time in the 1960s. Staub, 96, died in late July. Inspired by the writings of aerobics pioneer Kenneth Cooper, the mechanical engineer in New Jersey envisioned the machine would encourage regular exercise no matter what the weather.  A hard sell at first – people called the contraption a “threadmill” – today treadmills are a training staple. Read the obituary here: http://www.thestar.com/news/world/article/1231251–william-staub-who-changed-the-way-people-exercise-with-the-treadmill-dies-at-96#.UA_trElY2JQ.twitter

You’re heading out the door for your run when you hear a nagging voice. No, it’s not your Achilles tendon begging for attention, but rather your significant other wondering why you’re going running yet again. Lack of support for your time-consuming and sometimes all-consuming sport can cause friction. In an article on RunnersFeed, Halifax, Nova Scotia-based marathoner and coach Greg Weiczorek discusses how difficulties with a partner unhappy with your running can cramp your style faster than an improperly hydrated calf and provides some strategies to help mitigate the problem. It’s common, but often overlooked, problem for runners and Weiczorek provides some terrific advice. Read it here: http://runnersfeed.com/a-limiting-factor-to-training-partners-who-dont-support-your-goal-to-get-faster/

Running USA’s report on the state of running records a whopping 170 per cent increase in road races over the last 20 years. Between 1991 and 2011, the number of road race finishers jumped from 5.2 million to 13.9 million.  Of those, females made up 55 per cent of the finishers. The sports body cites a number of reasons for the increased interest in the sport, including charity and non-charity training programs and their social impact. The biggest driver of running, however, contends the group is: “access to running information via the internet and the use of technology for registration, timing, websites, email, social media, smart phone apps.” One of the fastest growing areas of the sport (if you consider these to be “running”) are “events such as  off-road, mud, obstacle course type race series such as Warrior Dash, Tough Mudder, Spartan Race and Muddy Buddy as their finisher numbers have grown from just a blip on the running radar 10 years ago to approximately 1 million as more and more people seek different running experiences beyond the typical road race.” The release on the report is here: http://runningusa.org/node/82755#83621

An incredibly inarticulate Scott Jurek talks about how he’s been working with Ultimate Direction on some pretty nifty packs and how he’s working doing this and working doing that and, well, working. It gives an insight into just how much “working” his co-writer Steve Friedman may have had to carry out, along with their editors, on Jurek’s New York Times bestseller, Eat and Run.  The video is here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u0ZNP70S-Yc

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About subthree

A multiple award-winning journalist, I'm currently a contributing editor with both Canadian Running and Canadian Cycling magazines. My articles have appeared in Explore, Canadian Geographic, enRoute, The National Post, The Globe and Mail, and many other magazines and newspapers. Formerly a competitive cross-country mountain biker, I switched to running in 2006. I've run seven marathons, qualifying for Boston five times (and which I've run once). Generally, I've placed or won in my age group in races, in distances ranging from five and 10 kms to half and full marathons. I've also taught spin classes at a number of leading Eastern Canadian gyms. Sub-three was a 2012 #Runchat finalist for Best Overall Blog.
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