Wednesday, February 10, 2010


(Wednesday, Feb. 10, in Chicago, with 15 inches of new snow today.)
By Ross Forman

Sometimes I wish I had a full-time running coach, kind of a personal trainer for running.

Sure, Katie is a great running coach and I get tips from others too, but lately I feel like I could use one of those yelling, screaming, motivating coaches. Like coaches I had during my hockey playing days.

Everyone knows those coaches; they rant and rave, yet ultimately it’s done for the best of the team.

Thing is, I’ve kind of hit a funk in my running the past couple weeks – winter weather will do that to you. Or certainly does it to me. I have yelled, ‘Enough with the snow’ and ‘Bring on spring already’ several times of late.

I don’t run outside in blizzards (as I've endured lately) or when it’s been even moderately cold (as it’s been for the past month-plus).

I could use some running motivation today, perhaps from Herb Brooks or Tom Essex.

I will be running a Half Marathon (13.1 miles) on Sunday, March 7 in El Paso, Texas, in honor of Coach Essex, a former prep football coach in New Mexico and Texas, who passed away in January, 2009. This will be the first race I’ve run in honor of anyone in particular – and I can’t imagine anyone more deserving.

I befriended Coach and his family (wife Cheryl and daughter Heather) while working in Las Cruces, N.M. He was the head football coach at one of the city’s high schools and I was a cub reporter, covering his team and more, fresh out of Indiana University.

Cheryl emailed me the other day: “To run in the El Paso Marathon in memory of Tommy is so special I can’t begin to tell you how much that means to Heather and me.”

While running in El Paso, I will be wearing a special orange bracelet that was given to Cheryl by one of Coach’s football players/track hurdlers from Alice, Texas. All of the Alice track/football players have worn similar bracelets.

El Paso is for Coach and also a training run for me for the BMO Vancouver Marathon on Sunday, May 2. Can’t wait to see Craig and his family in Vancouver, as well as Jen and my other Canuck friends.

I officiated a hockey game the other day and the other referee said he too is now training for an upcoming Half Marathon, his first ever, and he still runs outside in Chicago. But I don’t. Bally’s works for me in the winter, though it’s been tough getting motivated to run on a treadmill of late.

I can’t wait to go to Orlando, Fla., on Monday, Feb. 15, as I’ll get a few days of outdoor training.

Anyone have any motivation tips? I’m listening, just don’t yell. For now, I’ll rely on Kurt Russell as coach Herb Brooks in one of my all-time favorite movies, "Miracle"… and let's bring home the Gold from Vancouver!


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