Running Abe’s to Burn Donuts: How On-Line Silliness Translates into Real-World Motivation Thanks to dailymile

I’ve blogged on several occasions about my love for Twitter and dailymile as on-line sites that provide phenomenal motivation to keep me running. That motivation takes many forms, from the direct support of fellow runners, to the self-inspired desire to put in extra miles or a harder workout to live up to the bar set by my on-line running buddies. Sometimes, however, motivation arises from simple silliness, and often that is my favorite kind.

Yesterday, for example, I opened my Twitter client to find a string of posts relating to the feature on dailymile that converts your miles run into a number of donuts burned.  I largely sat on the sidelines of that discussion, but it was fun to watch the various donut posts, links and images come through both on dailymile and Twitter.  While it may seem silly, the realization that I’ve burned the caloric equivalent of some 750+ donuts through running since joining dailymile early last year is pretty strong motivation to keep me doing what I’m doing out on the road and trail.  Just think about it – I’ve burned the equivalent of 2+ donuts every day for the past year through my running – no wonder I like to say that I run so I can eat.

The latest photograph of President Lincoln. Ta...Image via Wikipedia

Today, my friends from the Run Talk Radio videocast posted a short video about Abe Lincoln “the runner.”  I watched the video, tweeted a couple of dumb comments about Abe Lincoln being a runner, and suddenly a whole bunch of folks got involved in the ridiculousness of the Friday afternoon discussion. One thing led to another, and dailymile mini-challenge creator extraordinaire @neudesigns set up an “Honest Abe 16-mile Challenge” for this weekend (to celebrate Abe being the 16th president).  The point here is that although I’m 35 years old, sometimes it’s kind of nice to partake in pure childish silliness, particularly when that silliness morphs into the motivation I need to get off my duff and go for a run. I got home from work, grabbed the dog, and ran 4.7 miles to honor Old Abe’s famous “Four score and seven years ago” line, and now fully plan to complete the Honest Abe Challenge outlined here on dailymile.

So, to my friends on both Twitter and dailymile, I wanted to extend a big “Thank You!”  You make me laugh, your friendship and support are much valued, and the motivation provided by silly conversations like we had today are often all it takes to motivate me out the door to run some miles and do something good for my health.  Lets let the silliness continue!

If you aren’t yet a member of dailymile, give it a try – membership is free, and I guarantee that you’ll love the community!

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About Peter Larson

This post was authored by Peter Larson. Pete is a recovering academic who currently works as an exercise physiologist, running coach, and writer. He's also a father of three and a fanatical runner with a bit of a shoe obsession. In addition to writing and editing this site, he is co-author of the book Tread Lightly, and writes a personal blog called The Blogologist. Follow Pete on Twitter, Facebook, Google+, and via email.

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