Tuesday, March 3, 2009

In No Shape To Exercise

Dom Joly is suspicious of hardcore triathletes.

It's really all about machismo and bragging rights – something I totally understand – just don't have access to... people who do Iron Man and suchlike are always the annoying types who wander into a situation when you are trying to impress a woman and you suddenly find yourself sitting alone in the corner munching on a large consolatory cheeseburger.

Anyway, why would I need to do it for real when I can fake it and get the same result? This photograph of me jogging through Death Valley in the Mojave Desert was enough when attached to an e-mail to my brother-in-law to persuade him that I was in the club. The only problem is that he's now invited me over to do the Ultimate Iron Man...

A commenter has a proposal.

I have always wanted to start a "Poseur's Club" of running whereby you enter each event in order to get the t-shirt and then purposefully don't show up for the event. Anyone interested can contact me through this on-line paper. You must have at least 3 t-shirts of races not run in order to qualify.Good luck and may the couch be with you.

Sadly I don't think that will work; usually you have to at least show up to get the shirt.


Dale said...

Mike, I think a lot of people do this. In most running events where I've been involved -- and that's quite a few -- you get the shirt at the time you pick up your race packet, which typically includes your bib and, if applicable, your timing chip. This tends to be the day before the race, although there's usually the option to pick up all that stuff on the morning of the race.

In my experience, it's the rare race that actually makes you finish in order to collect the shirt -- it's a logistical hassle to do it that way is, I believe, the main reason.

Even the Boston Marathon gave us the shirt the day before, and that's a "world major."

Here's what I'll say: twice, I have registered for races that I could not actually run. In those cases, in the first case I collected the bib but not the shirt. And I did not put the bib on my "wall of bibs" but threw it away. I collected it just because I thought it would be easier since I knew a timing chip was concerned, and they get very excitable and uppity about people returning their precious, precious timing chips.

In the second case, I didn't even collect the bib or the shirt. I just paid the fee.

Fortunately in both cases the money was for a cause I favored, so there was no "loss" I can complain about.

And I didn't run because [in case a.] I had an unexpected medical problem and [in case b.] I just didn't feel like showing up. It was cold that morning!

I say it's perfectly legitimate to keep and wear a shirt for a race you didn't actually run *provided* the race is also a fundraiser. (Most are.) So you paid for the t-shirt and to fund the cause. No shame there, and if it comes down to it, if someone sees you in the shirt and *thinks* you ran it when you didn't, big deal. There are bigger fish to fry in this life!!!

Sorry for the life-story.

Mike said...

Thanks Dale. I was hoping you would clear that up. I was pretty much just speculating based on very little actual information. As you said, it's hardly a big deal.

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