First-World Problems

Today was my second day of Brain Training, and consisted of 2mi @ base pace, 4x30s @ sprint, 2mi @ base pace.

For a while it’s been bugging me that my Garmin is wonderful indoors, on the track, but the calibration outdoors is only slightly more accurate than a geezer on the side of the road telling you it’s about 3 miles, when in reality it’s only about 2.5 miles. I need separate calibration for indoors and out, and it bugs me. I want to spend my time running, not calibrating my technology.

Enter, the Android. With the Garmin Fit app. It uses GPS, unlike my FR60. I decided to test them against each other. I discover that my ginormous phone barely fits in my running pouch. I accidentally delete the recording of my first 2 miles.


The rest of the workout goes well, with my FR60 telling me I’ve accomplished a bit more than my GPS is saying I’ve done. Now I want to sync things to the computer where I can actually see how things compare….

Garmin’s website is temporarily down.Then it’s back! But instead of seeing the results of each device, it looks like the FR60 data has taken the place of (most) of the data from my phone… And it is also missing the first 2 miles.


Now for some perspective.


Before my run today, I read the Runner’s World article on Julius Achon, the Ugandan runner. Dude saves 11 orphans from starvation. Takes a chicken to barter for a ride to a race 42 miles away, and ditches the chicken to run barefoot to run to the race by himself – when he was 13. He makes it to Portugal and the US, still living like he’s in the third world so that he can send money back home, to support even more children and build a medical clinic. And he still runs.

My favorite excerpt from the article, that says so much about how screwed up priorities in the first-world can be:

‘As news of [Achon’s] arrival spread, a growing number of villagers arrived from farms deep in the bush, including a barefoot woman, a former schoolmate from Achon’s childhood, carrying a year-old baby on her back. Kneeling at Achon’s feet, she explained that she was walking to the nearest clinic, five miles away, because her baby had been diagnosed with malaria. The infant now had to get a series of five shots, which together would cost 10,000 shillings, or about $5—more than she could afford. Could Achon help her? After handing her the money and watching her leave, Achon bowed his head and punched a fist into his palm. I asked whether the encounter had upset him. He said no, he was simply moved. “This small money she asked for,” he said, “I just kept thinking how little it was. How little it takes in this place to help people.” ‘


Things like this remind me how selfish it really is to be an American most of the time. Sally Struthers is mocked. We’re always looking for the next upgrade. We get upset if something doesn’t work right, right away. There are so many people living just at, or beyond their means. Or what they perceive their means to be.

A $5 latte could have been a malaria treatment for an infant.





~ by jesstracey on February 1, 2012.

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