Thursday, November 1, 2007

Meb, Ryan and Me

No, this isn't the title of another bad Hollywood comedy. It's the story of my life here in New York today.

I arrived at the Trials hotel (Upper East Side Courtyard Marriott) today around 2pm after a long wait at Newark to catch the shuttle into the city. We got up to our room and got situated.

On my way down to pick up my bib number and goodie bag, none other than Sara Hall (formerly Sara Bei), husband of Ryan Hall and a decorated runner herself, stepped onto the elevator.

An hour later, I was down getting a massage. There are three tables in the room. I was laying on the center one and Meb Keflezighi was on the table to my left and Ryan Hall was on the table to my right. There's a lot of things they are better at than I am. Add flexibility to the list. Then Abdi Abdirahman walked in to yack it up with Meb. Just as I was getting up from my massage, in walked Dathan Ritzenhein. Crazy. I felt like an extra in a blockbuster movie.

After pinching myself, it finally started to sink in that I'm not an extra in a movie but in fact a regular dude who met the high bar required to run in the Olympic Marathon Trials.

A couple of observations. Meb is short. Very short. It says 5' 7" on the USATF web site but there's no way. I'm 5'7" and I felt quite tall next to him. Ryan is also shorter than I imagined.

One other thing of note. Some trainer/doctor type person came in to examine Meb's ankle. The diagnosis was that "everything seems to be holding up OK." I don't know if he had a previous injury or something but it will be interesting to see if this is an issue on Saturday.

Anyway...enjoying myself here in NYC and trying to adsorb everything and recognize this for what it is...a once in a lifetime opportunity for an average Joe to run on this country's biggest long distance stage.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Good luck! We're cheering you on from here in North Bend and Snoq. What an inspirational story. You're a running celebrity among us early morning valley runners!

Amy Mitchell said...

What an amazing time in your life. Good luck on Saturday, Sean. We are all thinking of you and looking forward to hearing all about the experience. Hello to Mara and the kids. I'm so glad they are there to support you. Enjoy!!

Amy Mitchell & Family