NOV 25, 2022
Minute 1: The 10 best Black Friday deals for runners
Just about every day of the year, we are big supporters of our local run shop. Even if we can save a few bucks by shopping online, we prefer to head over to Marathon Sports, perched right on the Boston Marathon finish line, and do our shopping there. With apologies to the hardworking folks on Boylston Street, there are a few days every year where the deals are just too sweet to ignore. Today is one of those days, so we are helping our readers sort through the noise and hype to uncover “The 10 Best Black Friday Deals for Runners.” Everything from running shoes to GPS watches to training devices made our list. Check them out by clicking here. #RetailTherapy
Minute 2: The most popular road race day in America
Not everyone spent yesterday consuming 4,000-calorie meals and arguing politics with their relatives. Every year, hundreds of thousands of Americans toe the line in a Turkey Trot, making it the biggest race day of the year, despite the competing interests of high school football games and family dinner preparation. Most historians credit an 8K XC race in Buffalo in 1896 with launching the Turkey Day tradition, even though only six runners completed that race. It has grown wildly since then, peaking at nearly 1,000,000 runners nationwide in 2016. To learn more about this phenomenon, check out this piece from Runner’s World: “How the Turkey Trot Became the Most Popular Race in America” or this one from the NYT: “How Turkey Trots Became a Thanksgiving Tradition.” If you want to begin planning for next year, check out this list of the “Top 25 Thanksgiving Turkey Trots” or this compilation of “10 Unique Turkey Trots Worth Traveling For.” #StuffingARaceIntoYourDay
Minute 3: Brain tumor marathoners
While photographing the finish line approach at the TCS NYC Marathon this month, our heart skipped a beat when two fit and happy women passed our position wearing matching t-shirts that read: “Brain Tumor Survivor.” It was easy to imagine that these two women had been strangers until they became members of a club you don’t want to join. Yet here they were, strangers no more and strong as heck. Fast forward two weeks to the sideline of a youth lacrosse tournament in Florida when someone tapped us on the shoulder and asked about the Boston Marathon Media jacket we were wearing. This very fit and personable young man explained he’d run Boston in April, so we pulled up his race photos and re-lived a bit of the day. When I asked about the t-shirt he was wearing for the race – Gray Nation Endurance – he hesitated for a moment before sharing his story. It turns out that Mike Squillante was a super fit, 28-year-old lacrosse coach and fitness instructor when he passed out on his kitchen floor in August 2021. His pregnant wife and 8-month-old son discovered him and a short time later, Mike was rushed into emergency surgery. Unbelievably, he was able to finish Boston only 235 days after brain tumor surgery. When we asked about his prognosis, we assumed he would say “excellent,” given how fit he looked, but as he explains in this moving blog post, the tumor “is expected to grow back. There is currently no cure.” Based on the tone of many supportive social media posts from people who know him well, we wouldn’t bet against Mike living a happy and productive life. If you are in the mindset of giving thanks and want to support Gray Nation Endurance, you can contribute on their website, or better yet, grab one of their available bibs for top U.S. races and gather some donations yourself.
Minute 4: Avoid Black Friday Madness: Gift wrap running books this holiday season
Brian Metzler normally provides our readers with some of the best shoe reviews in the industry, but this week he is indulging his other passion – great books about running. As Brian says: “I’ve probably written more than 500,000 words about running this year, but I typically read a lot more than that. There are a lot of great forms of inspirational running content out there — online stories, videos and podcasts — but books make much better gifts. As a way for you to avoid the madness of Black Friday here are four new books I would highly recommend for runners of any ability level.” Check out Brian’s list of four terrific books along with a bonus entry we sneaked in when he wasn’t looking.
Minute 5: Quick Intervals
When ultrarunner Camille Herron crossed the finish line of the Jackpot Ultra Running Festival 100-miler in Nevada, she was on top of the world. Her time of 12 hours 41 minutes 11 seconds was good enough to win the race and defeat all male competitors. More importantly, it was also good enough to set a new world record for women at the 100-mile distance. Unfortunately, when the course was re-measured after the race, it was determined to be about 700 feet short of 100 miles. USA Track and Field decided to nullify the record. Details are here: “She ran a 100-mile world record. A course error means it won’t count.”
If you are in the market for Black Friday offers of the priceless variety, you may want to check out the site of our sister company, MarathonFoto. Every year, they honor American capitalism this weekend by offering a 40% discount if you use the code: VAULTSAVINGS40. This is the biggest discount of the year and it applies to all but the most recent races in their archives. Over the years, MarathonFoto has uploaded more than 250,000,000 images to their Photo Vault, going back decades. So if you’re looking for images of a fitter, younger version of yourself, this is the place. If you use this link, you can use your email address (current or past) to search for all of your races in one place.
Minute 6: Daily Inspiration
In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we want to express our gratitude for all of you who have made Six Minute Mile such a labor of love. We know from your many emails and reader survey responses that you are a diverse group in every sense of the word. Part of that diversity is how fast each of you can run. Our newsletter’s name and our story coverage can make it seem that we care most about the fleetest of foot among you, but nothing could be further from the truth. As we mentioned above, we had the privilege of working near the finish line at this year’s TCS NYC Marathon. As darkness fell, some of the best stories of the day emerged. People finishing in quadruple the time of the winners seemed even happier than those elites. Recently, the NYT put together a terrific video of these heroes who finish in the dark, long after the TV camera operators have gone home for the day. Thank you to all of our six minute milers and 20 minute milers alike!