Monday, December 12, 2011

introducing: the Wongstar's new sport!

So I mentioned I was on the hunt for a new sport.

I've always been the kind of person who focuses on what I can do instead of dwelling on the can't. Since I started to take the knee injury more seriously (instead of ignoring it and being A Big Giant Denial-Head), I had to face the fact that if I wanted it to heal up, I couldn't bike or run on it. For an indefinite amount of time...crappy little ligaments have poor blood supply and just take time to heal. Who knows how long.

I realized that dwelling on not being able to bike or run was making me into a very bitter, angry, depressed and dejected sourpuss. Not very like me at all. Sure I could swim...with a pull buoy, or just light kicking...but the last two winters I've focused on swimming hard-core, and doing something that is my least favorite sport all winter makes me grumpy and bitter too.

Still, I needed to do something. My original plan was to get into ultramarathons, when I first thought I could still run and not bike. But running over 70 minutes made my knee swell up a little. So back to the drawing board. I figured I needed to find a sport that I could enjoy and also be competitive in. It also had to be low-impact and not bother my knee. And tap into my ginormous endurance base and burn lots of calories and provide a nice endorphin high. And probably nothing to do with throwing and catching things, of which I'm not so coordinated. I'm not much of a team player either. hahaha! "Doesn't play well with others."

So no team sports or ball sports and low impact and endurance-ish.

Enter one of the most obscure Olympic events known to Americans:


Yeah, did you know it's an official track & field event? The 20km is the standard distance at the Olympics. Here is a clip from last year's track & field world championships in Daegu:

The world record is 1:25:08. You know, when I ran the Penn Relays 20km and won it earlier this year, I did it in 1:28:20. Holy crap, they can walk faster than I can run!


So yes, it does look really funny but abs, people, ABS. I had my first technique lesson last Wednesday. The weirdest part is not how it looks but learning how to "walk" all over again. I'd liken it to being a freestyle swimmer and learning how to do butterfly or breaststroke after years and years of doing freestyle only. Something like that.

And it is an Olympic event! And they have killer abs! Sign me up!


  1. well, at least you own an aero helmet and spandex. good luck!

  2. Awesome! It looks challenging, and you can use your existing fitness, AND it won't hurt your knee!! It's a win/win/win!