Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Running...and Hockey?

So you guys all know I'm a crazed hockey fan.  Nuts kinda crazy.  Like I'm living for the Stanley Cup playoffs kinda crazy.  If it wasn't clear, I love me my hockey*Go Canucks Go*

Most of you guys also know that the Boston Marathon is coming up next week.  I love this time of year.  Why?  Because of the anticipation of this race, reading all the blogs of people who are training for this storied marathon, and getting excited with them and going along for the ride.

So imagine when I'm reading this article by local columnist Jack Knox that combines running and hockey...I was immediately smitten by this story.  Everyone in Victoria knows who Geoff Courtnall is (he's a good old home town boy), and I actually remember hearing that he was running the Goodlife Marathon last year when I ran my first marathon (he killed it in 2:58...me, not so much).  Years ago, one of his hockey trainers named Jock Semple (yes, that Jock Semple of I-tried-to-run-Kathrine-Switzer-out-of-the-Boston-Marathon-because-she-had-a-uterus fame) would disparage the hockey players and say that they weren't in shape until they could run a marathon, and put the little seed in Courtnall's head that he wanted to qualify for Boston before his 50th birthday. 

For most people who know Geoff's story, he's had his share of demons...a dad who committed suicide due to depression, and his own struggles with addiction.  The guy hasn't had the easiest life, and was forced to grow up fast and work hard.  He credits running with helping him battle these demons and helping him change his life, and uses his new path towards running to help raise money for charity. 

And yes, he's running Boston next week...at age 49.

Nice job, Geoff.  You're an inspiration.


Rena said...

Wow. Very inspiring.

Char said...

That's my type of story. I love hearing how people drag their lives back under control again using running. It's almost a religion to me.