All I Really Need To Know I Learned From Running - With Apologies to Robert Fulghum

by Peter Rattigan

All I really need to know I learned from running…

All I need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned from running.

Wisdom was not in soccer (try telling me that at 14), neither in tennis nor golf, both of which I still play, both of which frustrate and entertain me in equal measure. Nope… it was from running.

Here’s what I learned:

Think Big (but remember Big is relative).

Work hard (when young and training).

Work well (when over 50 and “training”).

Be honest (I cannot run a sub 5 minute mile – any more).

Have goals (but be willing to adjust them).

You’re never too young or old to start (running – or almost anything else).

You always have another PR in you (just run a distance you haven’t run before).

Run through the finish (and SPEED UP when you pass the top of a hill).

Make it look easy (when passing - the other runner will think you’re better).

Hydrate (but not too much).

Eat carbs after a workout (preferably a Version Sports bar).

Stretch (OK – I haven’t learned everything…).

Always have good shoes (I share this one with my wife).

Other than that, it doesn't matter what you’re wearing (until after 50 and you don’t look so good in just anything, or unless running in Minnesota during winter…).

And finally….

When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic (seriously)

Stick together (unless running alone – then just stick), and

Hold hands (at the finish line – or after it)

And finally finally…

Be aware of wonder (running is still wonderful, 55 years after I started)

We all die (except runners – we never die, we just slow down…)

Everything you need to know is in a run somewhere (even one you haven’t run yet), the Golden Rule and love and pain and redemption (and my keys – they’re on that run somewhere).

Take any of any of the above and apply it to your life, your philosophy, your work, your government (especially).

And think, how much better it would be if we all could just go out for a run…
And cross the finish line together.

(Parts of this blog, in addition to the concept, are found in Robert Fulghum, All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten, Villard Books: New York, 1990, pages 6-7.)


Peter Rattigan
Peter Rattigan