I don't see how making a big deal out of 'running reckless' ISN'T being egotistical or self-righteous. How is shameless self-promotion helping your competition? I respect your times and your work ethic, Fam, but your competition works just as hard, and I don't see them saying things like "eating the wrong food caused me to not be able to run for more than half a mile at a time" or "I'm not trying to win a steeplechase medal because I know everyone is doping" or nonsense like that. Maybe you aren't doing it intentionally, but every time I see you do one of these "public relations" things - an article about you or by you, a new DVD released by you, a post or pre race interview - you are inventing new ways to try make yourself separate and 'legendary'. This endless struggle to be different is a bit nauseating. Distance running is a preciously simple thing, don't spoil it with all this side nonsense. You have the dedication and the genes to at least challenge for a medal internationally in an event of your choice - there just aren't many human beings that can say that.
I hate to sound like the bad guy here. But it is ridiculous how defensive a lot of people are being regarding Fam. I am NOT ripping Fam's racing strategy as a strategy - because it wasn't. It was an attempt to gain notoreity and to help him make a name for himself. That's what all of this is. Fam is very good at marketing himself - he's made two goddamn DVD's about his running career - and now he releases something saying that it's all for the sake of OTHER people and everyone is going nuts about him. It's cool that he wants to share his training techniques, I guess, but it just doesn't make any sense and it is kind of embarassing, to be honest. If you really think that you as a runner, and American running in general, is going to improve because Fam the man makes another movie about himself, you must be mistaken. Fam is not an "individual" he is an egomaniac. I say this WITH respect for his times. And instead of having these absurd knee-jerk prissy-pout reactions to everyone who criticizes anyone who is fast ("well YOU never ran 13:11, blah blah blah"), maybe you should take a look at the rest of American distance running. You don't see Solinsky and Teg making DVD's about themselves, you don't see Solinsky and Teg pandering for attention in every way possible. How has Fam done this?
1) Made a huge deal about living and training in New York. Why the hell would you live and train in the busiest city in the country when you have the entire United States as a possible training ground? It just doesn't make sense. He is desperate to be different.
2) Tried extremely hard to act and sound like Pre during the 08 Olympic Trials steeple and in the interview afterwards.
3) Sounded like a complete fool in an NBC article asking about his diet - he tried to claim his DIET was the reason he could no longer run more than half a mile (completely ridiculous), and he sounded an awful lot like Webb ("Oh, well I've got the secret all figured out now") - THERE IS NO SECRET! Distance running is incredibly simple. I don't care what kind of genes you were given at birth, it still comes down to heartbreakingly hard work.
4) This post above. I mean let's assume for a moment he is being sincere. He really does want to try to improve American distance running. Which is great. It really is. But nothing he is doing is really doing that. If he wants to improve American distance running he should be a showboat and he shouldn't spend so much time making a DVD about himself. He should run a track camp, release an INSTRUCTIONAL video, help coach kids, volunteer at a few local high schools. THAT is giving back to the community and helping the state of American distance running, and since he wants to be Pre so badly, THAT's what would make him more like Pre.
But as of now, I don't care how much you all whine and moan about un-supportive fans. I am supportive and I am rooting very much for Fam to succeed at an international level. But I'm also not dumb, and I'm blind enough to believe everything I read and take it at face value. This is Fam in his neverending struggle to be different. I wish he would quit it and focus on his training and be a strong, noble, quiet champion like Teg, Lagat, or even Rupp.
This only really makes me mad because it is so obvious what he is doing is not that revolutionary at all. A lot of guys share their training. Matt Tegenkamp sat down with Runners World and did a serious of seven minute videos, demonstrating his core routine on tape. Chris Solinsky sat down with a camera for Kimbia to talk about his weight problems and everything he was doing to get over it and talked rationally about what kind of effect that might have. Dathan Ritzenhein and Ryan Hall and Kara Goucher have all had Flotrack cameramen come to watch them run a workout and have their coach interviewed during it. Mahon and Hudson and Salazar will be speaking candidly about their training techniques and the workout which their athlete is doing, while the camera follows them. These are the best runners in the United States, disclosing everything about their training in a cool, informative, humble, and very interesting way. I love watching these videos. I do NOT love watching Fam go through his endless self-promotion rigamaroll and then sit back and listen to how no one else in the United States shares their training program and he is so special. He's NOT! And anyway, it's not his training program, it's Jack Daniels! And Jack Daniels' training book is the best-selling and most widely respected book in the business! This is nothing new that Fam is doing, nothing suddenly altruistic. Other runners do it without the ego, and give their coaches a fair nod of credit.