Timothy Rossi

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

The Trial of Miles; Miles of Trials.

1. Tell us a little bit about who you are and what you do for a living?

I grew up in and currently live in NYC. I graduated from Emory University in 2014 and am currently taking a, “leave of absence,” from Fordham Law. But in reality that is just a way of saying that I dropped out of Law School while hopefully indicating that I did not flunk out or anything like that, I just kinda realized Law isn’t for me. I currently work for MKTG as part of the Event Staff team for the Nike+ Run Club. Pretty much the team I am part of is responsible for anything that needs to happen involving the daily NRC events. 

2. How do you balance your exercise regime and your professional life?

Well as was hopefully clear from above, my professional life is very much intertwined with running, so there is that. However the simplest answer to this is that I prioritize my fitness regime. I have an idea of when I will have time to get a run in and go to the gym each day and I try to stick to that plan as best as possible. Does that sometimes mean getting a little less sleep? 100%. Also, see question 4.

3. When and why did you start running?

I actually started running during my senior year of high school. I got cut from the basketball team (I am not very good at basketball) and decided to join the indoor track team because I enjoyed missing class for sports, it was a season without a sport for me (I played soccer, baseball, and football), and there was a girl on the team that I liked. But I wouldn’t say I truly started running until my freshman year of college. 

I attended Villanova University my freshman year (before transferring to Emory) and joined their club running team to get involved and to avoid getting fat (that unlimited meal plan really gets you). It was a new team so I was able to help grow it, while also being exposed to some very serious runners (one of my former teammates just ran 2:20 at the Berlin Marathon). And then when I got to Emory I just continued to run to stay in shape. It wasn’t really until my Junior year that I started taking it a bit more seriously and getting competitive, and it’s just continued from there.

4. What motivates you to go out there, when you do not feel like it?

Day to day motivation changes all the time, from wanting to just get outside and clear my mind to wanting an excuse to eat a ton of food later in the day. But in the end my main motivation is wanting to get better at running. I have goals in mind that I generally keep to myself but the only way I am going to get anywhere near those goals is to continue to try and improve every day. Sometimes that does mean taking a rest day and chilling, but if I have a workout planned and its raining a little I can’t just cry about it and stay inside: That’s not gonna help me improve. One quote that I like a lot about this comes from the book, “Once a Runner,” (sidenote: this is my favorite running book ever and I quote it way too much but if you haven’t read it I highly suggest doing so) and I’ll leave that here:

"Quenton Cassidy knew what the mystic-runners, the joggers, the runner-poets, the Zen runners and others of their ilk were saying. But he also knew that their euphoric selves were generally nowhere to be seen on dark, rainy mornings. They primarily wanted to talk it, not do it.” (from Chapter 17, I don’t know what page because my copy is currently being read by a friend).

5. What is the longest distance you have ran?

The longest I have ever ran has been a marathon, and while I would at some point toy with the idea of an ultra I would much rather try and get fastest over that distance than go any further.

6. What was your best running experience?

This question is tough because the answer changes all the time. Finishing the 2014 NYC Marathon just under my goal of 2:50 was awesome. I recently ran a lot faster at the Bronx 10 Miler then I thought I would (my goal was to run around 57:30 and I ran 56:25). But then I also recently ran a rainy 5 mile training run followed by a few 800s on the track that I enjoyed a ton for different reasons so yeah, its evolving. 

7. What was your worst running experience?
This one is unfortunately a bit easier to pinpoint. During my first race ever for my high school indoor track team I was running a 400 at the Armory. The issue was nobody told me how far a 400 really is so I took off sprinting from the gun. I was winning by a decent amount but my legs really started to die after the first lap (an indoor track much shorter then an outdoor track) and with 50 meters to go I was coming out of the turn and my legs were dead. The indoor track at the Armory is banked so there is a little dip as you come out of the turn and, because my legs were dead, I just lost my balance and fell. The worst part was I tried to get up but my legs were done so I stumbled trying to get up and fell again. I ended up laying there for a second, getting up and jogging in well behind everyone while one dude yelled, “Yeah man! Way to finish!” and I just wanted him to shut up. Not the best first race experience but hey its been uphill since (*knocks on wood*).

8. How do you push through the pain?

This is something that is hard to discuss. As runners everyone talks about “pushing through the pain” and “giving it your all.” We watch videos of people crawling the last 200 meters of a marathon and celebrate them. But I think there is a fine line between pushing through the pain and needing to take a step back and think about health. In a race I get it, but I think a big thing is that if you’re training and you are experiencing severe pain you need to look at your long term health. One workout or run isn’t worth needing to take a massive break because you get injured.

With that out of the way, there is again a quote I like about this. I’m not sure who said it or where it comes from but it goes, “Running doesn’t get easier, you just get faster.” I like it because it shows how running is always hard, whether you are an elite marathoner running 2:05 or a recreational runner running their first marathon. So to more directly address the question, you just get more accostomed to the pain. It’s always there, you just farmiliarize yourself with it. Certain pain is good, certain pain is bad, and it’s up to you to distinguish between the two. 

I guess to put it simply, there is a time to embrace the pain and there is a time to listen to it and back off.

9. What advice can you give somebody who wants to start running?

I think the biggest thing would be to just do it! It’s not fun at all initially, but if get through those first 2 weeks that’s huge. Finding a group to help guide you is an awesome idea, but doing it on your own is fine as well. If it means just running around the block once on the first day and then twice the next day, that’s a huge step forward. The big thing is just consistency.

The other piece of advice I would give is to not necessarily only worry about distance. A lot of people will immediately want to run a marathon as their goal, but if you take smaller steps it will be a more enjoyable experience. Target a 5k first, and go from there. Also, you don’t need to just keep going longer. After you run your first 5k, maybe try and get faster at that distance? Just remember that running further isnt the only way to progress!

10. Which Social media sites are you on and how can one follow you?

Instagram: @TimRossi @LostboysTrackClub @BrooklynNavyTrackCrew

Twitter: @timrossi

My best running shoes is …  Nike Zoom Elite 8 (currently).

I love running because … I do (i.e. I can’t really explain it).

Injury is … sucky, and not a neccesary part of the journey.

My body is … fueled by ice cream.

My running playlist has … some Avicii, some Blink 182, and everything in between.

I hate running when … I really don’t want to be running.

Pain is … something every runner knows.

The road … long

Sweat is … salty

In future, I would like to run … faster then I currently can

Indie means … I have no idea

I do not like runners who … I try not to judge, but we all have things that annoy us (don’t lie about how fast you have run!)

Photos: @fredgoris @gnp_photos @paulstawong @stefaniacurto


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