This week the LA Times reported that the US Republican party vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan ‘forgot’ his marathon time. When asked what his marathon time was, he said:
“Under three [hours], high twos. I had a two hour and fifty-something.”
Now, this is a very impressive time, but unfortunately Mr Ryan was mistaken. His actual marathon time was 4 hours and 1 minute.
Personally I don’t think he could have forgotten his time, certainly not by more than an hour, moving him from a good marathon run to near elite status. I’d be interested to hear if anyone else has managed to forget their marathon time – especially by such a margin.
So I’m going to assume that Paul was bending the truth a little, he was trying to make himself out to be better than he really was. If that’s the case then I just wonder why. Completing a marathon is hard. It requires lots of training and dedication and is something that people should be proud of. To be honest, I don’t think people should even ask your marathon time and you shouldn’t feel obliged to tell people if they do ask – it’s not the point of that length of race, not for most people at least. So it’s really sad that Paul Ryan couldn’t just be proud of his run and enjoy the fact that he’s completed a marathon – something which only around 0.1% of the population ever does.
I think he’s missed the point of running the marathon and I think most real runners would feel a bit ashamed that he has represented us this week, if only fleetingly, as a marathon runner.