Last week Kelly Roberts ran a New York half marathon and quickly became known as the runner who took selfies with hot guys. Inspired by the silliness, a Georgia woman decided she would do the same thing, only, oopsie, she snuck into the marathon and then bragged about it. A collective, “oh no she di’unt” was heard throughout the running community.
Selfie shenanigans may be tolerated but “banditing” will not.
The Georgia Race Bandit snapped this pic at the beginning and titled it, “The ‘Waiting to Start the Race in a Corral You Snuck Into Because You Don’t Have a Bib Number’ Selfie.”
Beware the Bandits
In runner’s lingo, a “bandit” is someone who participates in a race without paying the entry fee. Some latitude will be given to those who jump in for a few minutes of jogging encouragement, but make no mistake, they’re still being watched. Spend too much time on the course and daggers will start shooting from the eyes of legit bib-wearing runners.
Frankly, I was surprised by the backlash. I figured people would write the Georgia Bandit off as a copycat trying to mimic a fun idea that had already been done. Since I’m a mediocre jogger, not a runner, I didn’t realize that within this fit band of brothers and sisters their lies a code. Thou shalt not bandit a race and bogart the swag. I’m paraphrasing, of course.
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Sometimes the passions that drive our lives just sneak up on us like a happy accident. For Abby Bales, running started early. By the 5th grade she was running short track distances. One year later her long distance running career started on a whim. As Bales was preparing for volleyball tryouts the next morning, a friend called and asked if she’d be interested in trying out for cross country instead. That phone call directed Bales into the sport she still loves today. While starting was easy for this natural talent, continuing has presented its challenges. However, what most of us would call a challenge, Bales has made look like a walk in the park.
From the sixth grade cross country team all the way through high school, Bales has run competitively. She completed her first marathon, the 2003 New York City Marathon, as a way to stay fit after graduating from college. She continued to rack up marathon finishes over the years until her first real hurdle appeared in 2010, when a diagnosis for ulcerative colitis “quickly became very serious and debilitating.” Bales stated that her running suffered, even though she managed to complete two marathons during flare-ups of her condition.
Bales was not responding to medication and got very sick. By 2012 she had her colon removed and replaced with a temporary colostomy bag for five months. Despite this huge obstacle, training commenced.
“It was really, really hard to start training again because my muscles were so atrophied and depleted after the surgery. It was a major surgery and my organs leached amino acids from my muscles to heal, which meant I had zero muscles left. It had never been that hard for me to run ever in my life,” said Bales.
Bales had plenty of reasons to throw in the towel, but clearly that’s not her style. After regaining her strength, Bales ran even with a colostomy bag.
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If there’s one thing we love sharing, it’s stories of health and personal triumph. But love stories take a close second. So any time we hear about a story that combines the two, we get downright giddy.
Caitlin Donovan is a friend of our Diets in Review staff, and when we caught wind of her unlikely engagement story, we knew we just had to share it. Her then-boyfriend, Dan, popped the question immediately following one of the biggest ‘mountaintop moments’ of her life: Her third marathon.
Caitlin and Dan have known each other their entire lives, literally. “We were sent to the same babysitter when we were the tiniest of tots,” she said. “And we’d been dating for about nine years when we started talking about getting married.”
The pair looked at rings together and came to a mutual understanding that they were going to tie the knot, but as weeks passed, talk of the subject subsided.
“In the midst of all this I was training for my third marathon,” said Caitlin. “When marathon Sunday rolls around, things are always exciting to begin with, so the last thing I expected at the end was an engagement ring!”
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If you tuned into the Today show on Friday, October 29th you likely saw host Meredith Vieira dressed up as Lady Gaga for the annual Today Show Halloween special. She looked fantastic, and at first I honestly had to take a double take as to whether it really was Lady Gaga or not. In an interview with Ladies’ Home Journal magazine, Veira speaks about her career (she just renewed her contract with the Today Show through 2011) and also her decision to get real with her diet when she encountered sleepless nights and low energy days.
To address her concerns, Vieira decided to meet with a nutritionist and revamp her diet and exercise regimen. The nutritionist put her on a 28-day detox diet, banning some of the worst offenders to our bodies – sugar, gluten-containing foods, alcohol and caffeine. Meredith also changed her fitness routine, which when your day begins at 2:30am can certainly pose its challenges. Not only did she increase the number of workouts, she also began utilizing weights to build muscle for a faster fat burn. Viera can now attest to having more energy to keep her going through late nights preparing for the next day’s show, as well as her extremely early and rigorous morning schedule.
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Al Roker ran a half marathon in Chicago
The ING New York City Marathon is this Sunday, and runners across the city are gearing-up for the 26.2 mile run. This year there were 125,000 applicants to the race, which is offering a prize of $600,000. There are expected to be about two million spectators and a massive amount of media coverage.
Many celebrities are seizing upon the event to promote healthy lifestyles and other worth-while causes. There are over 190 charities involved in ING’s New York City Marathon charity program, “A Million Dollars a Mile,” which aims to earn (you guessed it) $26.2 million.
Today Show star Al Rocker is one of the notable participants, and will be running his first full-marathon. “Almost everybody’s bucket list includes running the ING New York City Marathon,” said Roker. “Just the thought of being able to start this race gives me goose bumps. As does the fear that the weather might turn ugly. On the other hand, if it does that might help improve my time as I try to outrun an angry mob of soggy and cold runners!”
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