Happy New Year !

Happy New Year !

Today, we said goodbye to this very active running year if not to say decade by running the traditional Socialmarathon on Amager just outside Copenhagen, Denmark. We were blessed with extraodinary good weather and had a very nice run including the humoresque trip through the departure halls of Copenhagen Airport !

How better could we end this decade of the 00’s ? Well.. see the pictures of the day here.

I wish you all a great New Year – may your dreams come through !

Kind  regards… Tor

While we wait

So yesterday, 24-Dec-2009, we ran the very special “While we wait” marathon.. just a few hours before Christmas eve ! No less than 30 runners from all around Denmark seized the opportunity to record the marathon on this beatuful winter day in the totally snowcovered landscape on Fyn, Denmark.

Santa is ready for a marathon !

The race started at 8 in the morning and it was great fun… the next picture tells it all, doesn’t it ?

Merry Christmas… and enjoy the rest of the pictures here.

Why ?

“Why are we here ?”

A small quote, actually, from the great movie Gladiator, the question asked by the eternal Emperor and stoic philosopher Marcus Aurelius. Why are we here ?

When I look around me, now and I guess my entire life, few people actually seem to address this question. That has always been a puzzle to me… because I find all other questions pretty irrelevant if this one is not attacked or at least attempted. It could be that it’s a kind of tabu or something… but sadly, I think not. Rather, I think we live in the reign of the Idiots, in the media-Internet brainwashing era in which the fundamental philosophical questions have no appeal and no guardian Engels, we live in a Time in which ‘Reality’ is equal to the latest often either distorted or, even worse, undigested, broadcast. As if ! It’s becoming provocative !

So, why are we here ?  Do people not most often answer with  “What …” or “When …” answers… making collections of their career accomplishments or pinning out a few important moments of their lives or in History. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that these things are unimportant… it’s just that… they are hardly answers to the original “Why” question ! Having a nice little career in company X is far from an answer to anything in my book, and having seen City Y or being the proud owner of car Z or blonde XXX is still rather far from the target, isn’t it ? Still, most people live by “What” and “When” and are lured by the illusion of Vanity that these targets actually represent real answers to “Why”. They do not !

How about Science, then, you could say. Don’t we get answers here ? Not really. We choose if Science gives an answer. I guess most people have just ignored the original Why-question and gone into the comfy Science-tells-us-all sleep thinking that all will be fine by that. I think not ! Basically, Science is a “What”-thingy and can fundamentally, at best, tell us things about stuff. Stuff ! Stuff is stuff… and far from the much more complex issues of human feelings, love, hate, memories, social and religeous communities, nationalistic prides etc. not to mention, and mind you this, the spiritual experiences available, and recorded thoughout all times, to Mankind. In these contexts Science is merely a set of toys. Religion, too, is a choose-yourself thingy and even though the drive for “a religion” is universal (Science is a kind of Religion too…), the net outcome of “Religion” on a global and historical timeframe is, at best, ambigueous and far from setting the peace of mind, say answering the Why-question. To rephrase Marx, Religion and Science is opium for the people !

So,  Why are we here ? Do I have an answer ? Absolutely not ! But I’m really frightened by the fact that I can count the number of people even hinting the presence of the question “Why are we here ?”  to less than a handful… yes, it really worries me. Furthermore, I feel very isolated, actually, with the wisdom that Death brings… namely, the deep hinsight of the irrelevance and short-termed ignorance connected to the “What”-life that everyone, including myself not to forget, is living.

It is a pain !

Why – why- are we here ?

The best marathons in 2009

Just like the last years, I give my you my take on the best marathons in 2009, i.e. amongst the ones I have participated in myself. Best does not necessarily mean ‘objectively best’ but does also emphasize the magnitude of the experience including ‘other’ factors such as city/nature facilities etc.

I have divided the marathons into four groups and as always, you find links to the races via ‘My marathons’ in the menu. You may notice that I have quite a lot of Danish runs on my list which both reflect that I have had most of my races here in Denmark this year… and that almost all those races have a very good level of organisation and experiences… this applies also to the races not in top 5. Keep it up, Denmark !

Incredibly, it looks like that I will reach +60 marathons completed in 2009 alone making it just below 170 in toto for me ultimo 2009.

1. Allermöher doublet + Beachmarathon weekend triplet (Germany, Denmark)
2. Zürich New Year (Switerzerland)
3. London (England)
4. Amsterdam (The Netherlands)
5. Samsoe (Denmark)

City marathons
1. London (England)
2. Amsterdam (The Netherlands)
3. Rotterdam (The Netherlands)
4. HCA Odense (Denmark)
5. Copenhagen (Denmark)

Nature runs
1. Storebaelt Nature (Denmark)
2. Rudersdal Cannonball 3 (Denmark)
3. Heide-Elbe (Germany)
4. Samsoe (Denmark)
5. Beachmarathon (Denmark)

Small races
1. Zürich New Year (Switerzerland)
2. Citroën Aalborg (Denmark)
3. Beer marathon (Denmark)
4. Vänersborg (Sweden)
5. Kalundborg 5 Taarns (Denmark)

These are lists based on my personal experiences, of course. To mentain memory of the best races ‘ever’, I  have a category of the ‘all-time best’ marathons as well. Here, the big marathons do live up to their famous names !

Best ever
1. New York (USA)
2. Swiss Alpine 42K (Switerzerland)
3. Hamburg (Germany)
4. London (England)
5. Rome (Italy)

Hectic end of a busy marathon year

2009 has been quite a marathon year in Denmark !

We have seen a multitude of new races, small as big, and an explosive growth in the number of people running many marathons, ie. +20 a year. We are projected with as much as six runners reaching +50 races, many with +30 and even more with +20. Only one year back this would have been unheard of, in fact my own numbers with 41-31-25 the past three years all made it tied to the maximum number of completed marathons each of those years, 41 being the current year-exit record.

But not anymore ! This is the year of the ‘Grandmaster’ (Stormesterens år), Mogens Pedersen written for 66 races as we speak and a bucketful more are to come the next few weeks. Same applies to me and a number of the other dudes, ie. a hectic but hopefully also enjoyable closure of this enormous running year.

Actually, I do look forward to stepping down from the marathon ‘hunt’. My plans for 2010 include fewer marathons – but still probably like +30 –  and increased, evil tongues would rightly say new, focus on speed work and efforts on shorter distances like 10 K races. But first and foremost I will dedicate more time to my career and my private family matters. But don’t get too alarmed, race reports will continue to appear every 14 days or so.