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Notes From Outgames: The Runner

Notes From Outgames: The Runner


Throughout the week, is getting up close and personal with athletes competing in sporting events at this year's Outgames. Today we talk with a marathon runner.

Bill Barrett, 50, a lawyer from Chicago, ran his 13th marathon on Sunday, July 26, here at the second World Outgames. He finished in three hours and 45 minutes, which was 15 minutes under his personal goal time and 65 minutes behind the winner, Hans Martin of Berlin. The 26.2-mile marathon had 90 registrants among the 5,500 total athletes signed up to compete in the Outgames.

"I did well; I was pleased with my run," Barrett said. "It was a good course and the event was well organized. The course was very flat; I think that helped. Plus, the day was cool, which helped. It was a nice day [to run]. It was a better run than I expected."

His next marathon will be on October 11 in Chicago. Were you lonely on the course?Bill Barrett: No. Every now and then I was running with someone, pacing with them. But I like running alone. It gives me time to think.

What were you thinking about today?Finishing. The first half of the race, you play music in your mind, you're looking around. The second half of the race, you're just thinking about finishing. As you get near the end, you become obsessed with finishing.

What about an iPod?I don't run with one. I think it would be too distracting.

What goes through your mind when you just don't feel it?Most marathon runners hit the wall at about mile 19, and the last six or seven miles are a grind.

Do you think about your postrace meal during the run?Yes, and I usually have pasta [after the race], but I'll have anything, including a regular Coke, which is something I don't normally drink, but I'll have it for the sugar.

What do you think of runners who wear goofy outfits during a marathon? That's fine for them.

How important was the Outgames for you?It was important for me personally because I hadn't run [a marathon] for two years and I was wondering if I would ever run another marathon, and now I have. In terms of the event, it seemed to be very important for a lot of people, so it was nice to be a part of that.

- Check back tomorrow for a chat with Dave Steeves, who is at Outgames competing in volleyball and softball.

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