Interview With Adam Goucher, Page 4
You mentioned your book, Running the Edge, and you also have a website, runtheedge.com. Talk a little but about how those ideas became a reality.
It was a couple years ago, back in 2009. My buddy Tim and I, we’ve had this ongoing conversation since we first met back when I was a freshman in college, and it was something that as our friendship grew we always, always challenged each other to not only be the best we could be as runners and athletes but also in anything we did. We challenged each other. It could be playing over-the-roof whiffle ball and seeing who could hit the most home runs over the house, or just challenging each other to be the best brothers and sons. It was just challenging ourselves to live a life as essentially good people.
I’ve always been a little bit brash at times and a little more outspoken at times but I’ve always tried to do right by people as best I could. It’s been this journey, this kind of this conversation we’ve had through the years, this ongoing story. At the end of my tenure with Alberto essentially I started reflecting on my career and on my life and it was just the right time to start putting all these ideas down that we’d talked about through the years. It was basically at the middle and end of ’09 and it was just starting to come together then. We decided this is the time to do it so we started. Tim came out here and spent 5 weeks right off the bat and we kind of set up a war room essentially in the office where we just had poster boards and dryboards and just ideas all over the place. We outlined chapter by chapter and how we wanted things to come together and it just kind of started flowing, it started working that way. I think the book’s message and what we were trying to get across was we’re challenging each other to take what we’ve learned in running, and the attributes that have made us good athletes, and transfer that into other aspects of our life to make us better and ultimately the best that we can possibly be. We’re saying that we’re on this perpetual journey–it’s constantly there. The goal is to become what we call a distance maven. The thing is that you’re always gonna have your slip ups. It’s like a sliding scale. You’re gonna have times when things are going great and you’re gonna have times when you say something stupid again and say “why did I do that?” but the key is that you can recognize it and then work to not do it again. Those times become fewer and fewer and fewer. So if I say something stupid or I do something stupid or if I’m not living up to my ideal self, the self that I want to be–not just as a runner as a husband or as a friend for me–if I can get in there and change that basically, our thing is that when you change that, when you change those attributes, you’re bettering your entire self.
The book is not about what mileage to run or what workouts to do. It’s not about that. It’s about self reflection and learning about yourself and looking within and then figuring out how to be the best that you can be in all areas of your life. And by doing that we believe you’ll become a better runner because you’ll be more complete in those other areas of your life.
Do you think in the process of getting all this stuff down on paper, it’s helped foster your own change in attitude in regard to your running compared to where you were a couple years ago?
Yes. That’s exactly it. It’s been therapeutic for me, honestly. I’m not lying when I tell you I did not like running. I’m not lying to you. I was not a fan of it. I was sick of it. I was sick of everything. I’d had enough of it. It’s just been lost dreams and lots of up and down and coming back from injury after injury and one blow after another and enough was enough. And I had lost what made me love running and that was just being out there and being free essentially. Free of expectations. Just being out there and letting running happen without it being a job. When it became too much of a job, too much of a career, I didn’t love running for what it meant to me. So for me it really allowed me to find that again. I just feel happier every single day. Just day in and day out I feel very content in what I’m doing and I’m excited to be out here getting to race again and trying to achieve my goals and just to see how far I can push myself and how far I can get.
And finally, just to build off that, what do you think you’re ultimately capable of in the marathon if you can keep this momentum going?
I think that first of all if I can get to the Olympic Trials in January healthy that’s a huge victory in itself. If I’m able to get to that point uninterrupted and healthy, that alone is huge. So, if I can get to that day and I’m healthy and training is pretty much uninterrupted, then I think there’s no reason that on a good day I couldn’t be competing for a spot on the (Olympic) team. Any day, there’s no reason why I can’t be there if I’ve trained correctly, I’m healthy and I’m excited to do it. There’s no reason that I shouldn’t be shooting for a spot on that team. I just have to go day by day and see what happens and dream big, really.