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A Tick and a Tock from the New Millennium

A Tick and a Tock from the New Millennium

Article by: Michael Selman

Reproduced with permission of the author
In the scope of a thousand years, we are but a tick and a tock away from the new Millennium. Two more months to look farther back then we ever knew possible and two more months to plan just how different things are going to be on the other side. And for most of us, running will be part of it.

I knew on the first of this year that I wanted running to be a part of my Millennium celebration. Runners are like that. We like for running to snugly fit somewhere in the middle of our significant events, and the places life takes us. Going out of town for a wedding? Look for a local race while you're there. Got a business trip? Stay an extra day, and run a race. Having induced labor this weekend? Maybe you had better not look for a race to run, but you might just still look at the schedule to see what you are missing. Surely, I'm not the only one who thinks this way.

New Millenniums always seem to give us pause for reflection. As they draw closer, us runners just have to pull out our volumes of runner's logs, read entries we wrote 15 years ago, and feel proud in our recorded accomplishments. We can easily relive each PR as if it happened yesterday, and painfully recall why there was a six month period back in 1987 where not a single entry was recorded because there was none to make. The good, the bad, and the ugly, all documented, if not in books, at least in our heads, and among our most highly prized possessions.

I can't really explain why, but I think that running in the 21st Century is going to feel different to me. I must be at just the right age, or point of diminishing ability, that I can confidently say that PRs at most distances are behind me. The other side of the new Millennium provides me with a nice excuse to say "I am now starting with a clean slate, and run a new tier of PRs." It will be a 21st century standard, where everything will again be new, and every accomplishment will be an exploration into the unknown.

I will never forget my first 18 years of running. It has changed everything else about me, and every change has been for the better. That won't be any different in the 21st Century. But in two short months, a tick and a tock of the Millennium clock, it will all be archived to the 20th century running files, and, until I set some 21st Century standards, every race will be a PR. My first one will be on January 1st, at a little before 1 PM, when I complete my very first 10K.

I had that planned a year ago. After all, I am a runner.

Michael Selman
Roads Scholar
Atlanta Georgia USA
Michael Selman is a freelance writer who has appeared in publications and web sites throughout the world, including Runner's World, Footnotes, and CoolRunning.

Michael has published many other articles on running and his personal experiences in the Thoughts of a Roads Scholar. Feel free to E-mail him at

This page last updated: Saturday 20 March 2010

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