Ultramarathon Man

Last night a group of running friends, my husband and I got together to see the limited screening of Ultramarathon Man: 50 Marathons, 50 States, 50 Days. This is a movie based on the new book by Dean Karnazes, the man who was crazy enough to attempt this 50/50/50 feat.

The movie was showing at a few theatres across the country for one night only, July 31. There were two showings in Nevada, one showing here in Las Vegas.

A small portion of the marathons Dean ran occurred at the actual marathon event, but many of the runs were official marathon courses, re-enacted just for his entourage because the real marathon didn’t actually coincide with his travel dates. At most runs he ended up with large groups running along with him over the course. A couple of the courses were entirely trail runs and they looked brutal. Especially when you saw close-up shots on the big screen of all the injuries the runners sustained from falling. Ew…

He finishes the challenge by running the New York Marathon, in just 3 hours. That’s a fast time on its own, never mind the fact that he had already done 49 marathons in as many days. And the day after his big finale? He went through a huge round of interviews on various news and talk shows, laced up his shoes and started to run west until he reached Missouri. The reason for this run? Just to clear his mind after all of the press and publicity of the previous 50 days. Crazy!

He claims to be an introvert several times throughout this film. I’m not entirely sure I believe that. Anyone that can pose in short running shorts and no shirt on various magazine covers, allow camera crews to follow him around all day, and decides to run an event that is essentially putting yourself on display doesn’t seem to be acting like I would expect an introvert to behave. 🙂 But whatever the case, he’s a pretty compelling man.

It was a little disappointing how amateurish the film felt from time to time, and it could have been shortened some if the editing was tightened up a little. Or they could have showed more about some of the different marathons, because it glossed over a lot of them. There was a moment where he talked about how great it was to meet all the school children that were following his journey in their classrooms. And then it proceeded into a montage of children running with him that was entirely too long. Tighten, edit, reduce, edit and then repeat the process!

Overall, it was an enjoyable film. It’s pretty inspiring to see somebody who is running all of these marathons hoping to encourage the people of America to get off their rears and MOVE! Hopefully I’ll be able to keep his actions in mind if I am ever thinking a run is pretty tough, no room for me to complain compared to what he’s done, right?

Of course, I’m not Dean Karnazes and I don’t have superhuman strength. (Which, the man must have because seriously… putting your body through that much physical and mental stress in that short of a time? Wow!)

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