Fitness Magazine


By Xmarkm @matthews_mark
Would you be a bandit?
In my novel,  The Jade Rabbit, the main character is a marathoner who takes Sharleen,  a 18 year old homeless girl, (nicknamed the Ghost of Moonlight) under her wing during the last days before the Detroit marathon. They run together a few miles on the track, and Janice decides Sharleen would make a perfect bandit. Janice digs up an an old race number, pins it to her shirt, and has the little ball of spunk meet her at mile 20 to run alongside her for a few miles.
Had I been fast enough to be running behind her at that point, I don't suspect I would have appreciated this.  I kind of hate it when fresh legs jump in and out of a course. In some way, I'd rather they bandit from the start to the end.  Based on Sharleen's life story, however, and the fact she was trying, she should be given a free pass to Bandit for life, but otherwise, I'm on the anti-bandit side of the fence.
I'm I just being a crotchety, 'get off of my lawn kids ' old man when I get a bit irked at fresh legs jumping in and out of the course?
 It kind of crushes me to see someone jump in a course and start running free and easy. Sure, mentally I know their situation is different than mine, but it doesn't sit well with my legs, zaps me mentally. Not to mention that bandits take from resources and has to add to my costs.
Is there ever a time it's okay to be a bandit?


Kathrine SwitzerThe Original Bad-Ass and Best Excuse to Bandit

When I was in Boston, I learned it's a pretty regular thing for thousands of runners to sneak behind the official pack of runners and run the course. Google "Boston Marathon Bandits" and you'll come across dozens of articles.
There's a group called the " Red Snakes" who actually awards the boston bandits  with a special certificate As they cross the starting line, the Red Snakes chant, “Gombatte! Try your best!”
Reading another article,  One bandit says, “You’re the same as everybody else, but at the end you don’t get the official time and you don’t get the finisher’s medal.”
Um, no you're not the same as everybody!  You weren't invited, you didn't raise the funds (raising funds is harder than training, if you've ever tried)  and you didn't qualify. I worked for for Ten Years to qualify. That's a decade in scientific terms. A quarter of my life dedicated to getting an invite to the big dance, and you show up with shoes and you're in? Maybe you ran 26.2, but we got there different. You're doing a Paul Ryan, dismissing the achievements of those who did when you speak in these terms.
I'm not being all moral about this. I'm as subversive as the next guy. Fight the power. Elitists should wipe the arses of the poor with their silk handkerchiefs.
In fact,  I've been caught stealing once when I was 5... I enjoy stealing. It's just a simple fact.  When I want something and I don't want to pay for it.  I walk right through the door.  If I get by, it's mine. Mine all mine!

I also realize that, there's sanity in numbers and had I lived close by to Boston, I may have bandited as well. But what a waste it would have been. To think of all the character traits I built through the trials and tribulations of those ten years. Same as if I had taken a Lance Armstrong cocktail.
So, in this case, I'm the elitist.  and like any elitist will say, I earned this right, damn it, I did it the right way, I worked harder than you.  (Forget that I just may have had genetics on my side, or body type, or opportunities that others didn't, that I was maybe born on third base and didn't hit a triple.)
So, go ahead, fight the power, practice your subversions.


Love your rage, not your cage.
I will run your marathon. But not on the fifth of November, for I am busy.
But when it comes to Boston;  


And That One's a Bandit! and That One's a Goon! Who let all this rif-raff into the room.
There's one smoking a joint, and a Runner With Spots. If I had my way, I'd have all of them shot.

 I suppose if we all try our best and are good to each other then all will be well.

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