East Nasty of the Week: For the FIFTH time!!! THE Chuck Hargrove

January 3, 2013

At the start of each year we like to go back to our roots and post an open letter to our runners from the man, the myth, the LEGEND…Chuck Hargrove! If you are new to our group, or this site, feel free to read through Chuck’s first four ENOW’s here. Although he has not been as present over the past year, he pledges to try his best to get back to the Wednesday night runs soon.

I hope you enjoy his words of wisdom as much as I did. Enjoy!

 

Chuck

Happy Nasty New Year,

Another new year has arrived, yet winter in Nashville looks gloomy.  The gray sky looks the same at 8:00 a.m., noon, and 4:00 p.m. Early sunsets and cold temperatures can be a siren’s song for staying indoors. But not for you….no… .

This is the time of year when running champions are made.  A college football national champion will be crowned within a week.  These college gridiron teams did not just show up last week.  Their preparation started many months in advance, as should yours. Anyone with a goal of finishing the Country Music Half Marathon should already have a sufficient distance base and ability to run for an hour.  For some this trek started last August at Potato to Tomato 5K training.  Those new to running should strongly consider this highly successful summer plan.  Tell your friends.

Let’s say you are past Tomato training and secure in your 5K to 5 miles capabilities.  This weekend we start Country Music Half Marathon training at Shelby Bottoms.  Training begins at the highly casual 9:00 hour both Saturday and Sunday mornings.  You have one of two days to join us, so no excuses. Aspiring 13.1 mile runners should be able to complete about an hour of running this weekend.  I will be your Sunday coach for 2:15 pace group.  We have pace groups as fast as 1:30 (about 6:52 per mile) all the way up to 2:30 (11:26 per mile).

Years ago East Nasty started as a Blue Ridge Relay team, evolved into a spring half marathon training plan, then added Wednesday night runs May 2008. Now East Nasty is the trend setter for training, nice threads, relay teams such Ragnar, travel excursions such as New Orleans Mardi Gras Marathon and Half Marathon; paint, mud and obstacle runs. Our street cred is noticeable.

Sadly and too often, our street manners are also noticeable.  Reverend Drew preaches the good news about running close to the curb, with reflective gear, with ears clear of musical distractions, and having your head on a swivel when running in traffic. Minimalist is a running shoe trend and not for reflective gear, courtesy, manners and awareness trends.  Max out on reflective gear and dome lamps, face traffic when running, anticipate that car does not see you, run defensively, run in a group.  Winter and windy jogs mean picking warmest part of day to run.  Start your workout into the wind.  Wear gloves and keep an extra pair in your car (gloves do not work well indoors since most rooms hover near 70 degrees–hardly gloves weather). When finished running, get into dry clothes.  Grab a bite to eat.

For those who are counting or aiming, you have about 475 days to Boston Marathon 2014. See you this weekend.

Chuck Hargrove

 


East Nasty of the Week: Geeky Gunjan

April 29, 2012

What do you get when you mix part IT genius, part micro brewing champ, and part world ranked ping pong player? The answer is this week’s newest East Nasty of the Week, the one and only Geeky Gunjan!

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So let’s start with the basics:

Born in the suburbs of Mumbai, India.

Graduate of Mumbai University for his undergrad., and a master’s degree from Polytechnic University of NYU, located in Brooklyn, New York.

But there is so much more to “Geeky Gunjan,” for instance, his name. His name real name is Gunjan, and his self-given nickname came from a way to distinguish himself in the world of facebook. No need to throw his whole nickname out there, as he answers to just Gunjan any time you call his name.

Gunjan also revealed that he used to be ranked towards the top of young ping pong players in the nation during his middle school years. He claims that he was a relatively shy pre-teen, and thus was able to focus all his efforts in the art of table tennis. His team, that’s right TEAM, were ranked 2nd in the entire state of New York, and he went on to win a fair amount of medals and trophies playing the sport. Unfortunately as he has grown older he has not had the ability to continue staying up to speed as he used to, but he more than likely could take down anyone who is reading this blog right now!

Undergraduate work was difficult at Mumbai University due to its intense nature of the computer science department. Graduate school in New York City offered a much more fun and active paced environment for his studies. In 2008 Gunjan was offered a 6 month work project here in Nashville, TN. He was supposed to return to NYC after the work project ended, but more and more work kept coming in and his contract was extended more and more each time.

So Geeky Gunjan got his start into the running world in 2010, and completed his first 5K in that year’s East Tomato race. He noticed all the of the “East Nasty” shirts throughout the entire race, and after looking up our group online, he found himself out with our group on a Wednesday night run. Through East Nasty he trained and completed his first half marathon (the CCM) in 2011. He owes everything in that race and his time of just over two hours to his friend and running partner, Jessica McCurly.

In his spare time he enjoys riding with fellow cyclists, doing yoga, and brewing his own beer. So far he has been able to create a Chocolate Milk Stout, a  Weizenbier and a Belgian tripel. He also is a BIG supporter of the Nashville Rollergirls! Finally, Gunjan is one of the happiest people out at East Nasty each week. You will more than likely find him smiling and ready for a good laugh.

Be sure to leave him a comment below!

Rod


East Nasty of the Week: Claire Gibson

April 16, 2012

(This ENOW is brought to you by a new writer to our site, Claire Gibson herself!!! Look forward to more updates and ENOW write-ups from her in the future.)

Hi, I’m Claire, and I used to be a closeted runner.

I grew up in a military family and moved eight times in 16 years.  In the midst of all that change, on thing stayed the same.  No matter where I lived, I was constantly surrounded by packs of soldiers running PT, the Army’s physical training.  Cadences echoed through my windows starting at 5:30 a.m. every day of the week, and by age 10, male voices huffing “When my granny was 92, she did PT better than you” became my regular alarm clock.

Despite the mass of running clubs that surrounded me daily, I was never enticed to join—a running club, or the military.  I believed what they shouted every morning, that someone’s grandmother probably was faster than me, and that was reason enough to avoid discussing my secret love of the road.  Instead, I was a closeted runner.

I didn’t want anyone to know I enjoyed running—because I felt I wasn’t good enough at it yet.  My secret was safe, and no one ever asked me how my training was going—because to everyone else, I was never training.  In college, my runs grew longer and I grew to enjoy them more.  I started thinking I might be faster than that granny after all—but never shared my love with anyone else.

So what would lead a girl like me to join East Nasty, the largest running club this side of Fort Campbell?

After graduating from Furman University in South Carolina, I joined Teach for America and moved to Nashville to mold the minds of 12-year-olds.  Daily I would return home sapped of energy, lucky if I could even go on a walk, let alone a decent run. Three years of teaching nearly killed my secret running habit—that is, until this year.
In January, I found out that my teaching position is being eliminated next year.  I am losing my job.  But don’t go feeling sorry for me.  That bad news gave me permission to leave teaching for a writing career—something I’ve feared and put off for years.  What if I’m no good?  It’s the same question that had plagued me about running.  That day, I went to Fleet Feet and bought a new pair of running shoes.  After fourteen years fearing being the last one in the pack—Mark Miller convinced me to come run with East Nasty.

Though my fears were still present, it didn’t take long to realize they were irrational. Rather than competitive, East Nasties are friendly, inclusive and motivating.  My first Wednesday night run was very dark and I had no headlamp—but a stranger let me run beneath the light of hers so I wouldn’t fall.  People asked my name, and the cadence I heard was of folks getting to know each other.  Then and there, I was so thankful not to be alone.

In this new season of change, I’m blessed to be running with a team.  Because we can’t do this journey alone, and sooner or later, the truth always comes out.   I’m thankful it did.

Claire

(Read more of Claire’s work here.)


East Nasty of the Week: GET DOYKED!!!

December 15, 2011

I know, I know, my ability to create an East Nasty of the “WEEK” has not been that consistent over the last couple of months. I could make excuses (like my teaching/grading schedule sucks up all my time and my life) but I will not subject you to the inner workings of how to accurately grade a middle school thematic essay. INSTEAD, I will just move right along to our newest member to the ENOW club, the absolutely legendary Bernadette Doykos!

You may think that in order to understand Bernadette’s life, one need only to watch Affleck related Boston films (such as Good Will Hunting), stare at a poster of Tom Brady all day, or head over to Dunks (Dunkin Donuts) for a coffee, “two creams and a sugga.” But truthfully there is sooo much more to her fabulous life! For starters, Bernadette was born in Methuen, Mass. She is the youngest of 8 kids, and apparently used to have one “wicked awesome” accent. It would sound something like this, “I’m from Methuen and no one could be proudah, if you cannot he-ah it, I’ll say it a little loudah.”

Athletically, Bernadette admitted that she was not all that dominant. However, her dance team and their stellar skills did land her a gig at Epcot Center sometime in 90’s. Translation, she is THE SICKEST on the dance floor! She ended up playing field hockey and lacrosse in middle school and high school, but preferred reading books and playing on the beach instead. She attended Phillips Academy, which has the prestige of such notable alumni as President George H.W. Bush, President George W. Bush, the guy who invented Morse code, and the guy who created the show Law and Order. The big benefits of playing on a sports team were that it offered her a break from the intense nature of her academic studies and provided her with friends as well.

For college Bernadette headed off to Wesleyan in Connecticut. At that, as she calls it, “Liberal-Hippie epicenter,” she majored in Sociology and even spent a semester teaching 1st graders at a charter school located in Queens, New York. Bernadette played Lacrosse throughout her college years, again more to build a sense of community of friends than to demonstrate her wicked ability on the field. Bonus for her, Bill Belichick would come to their team games her senior year, and being a lifetime “Pats” fan, it could not have gotten any better (or “betta”.)

Bernadette’s running life began when she moved to New York City. She wanted to give back to a great charity called MetroLacrosse that she had previously worked for in college. She got an email from the organization about signing up to be a team runner for the 2008 Boston Marathon, as long as she could raise some money for them and actually finish the race. She had always been a fan of “Marathon Monday,” with its lively support of the runners, the Sox, and just camaraderie of your fellow neighbors, with the occasional adult beverage enjoyed along the way. Kind of like the Cheers theme song in action. Well, she signed up without even a mile of base running under her belt, nor did she have training buddies to help her along the way. The end result was a small disaster, but she enjoyed every painful, slow, and walking step of the race. After the race she swore off running in any capacity, but that all changed when she decided to move to Nashville.

After Boston 2008

Bernadette moved here in August of 2009, just two days before graduate school began for her at Vanderbilt University. She is studying to obtain a Ph.D in Community Research and Action, and she works part-time at Stratford High School in their college counseling center. She believes in the power of after-school programs that help traditionally underprivileged teens get ready for college. So besides her best friend from college living in Nashville, Bernadette did not know a soul in the city, and like so many others could not figure out the interstate system. In short, during that first year of graduate school, she kind of despised living here. On the return to Nashville for year two, Erin Rehel peer-pressured Bernadette to come out to an East Nasty run. And that, ladies and gentlemen, changed everything.

Bernadette may still hate running (ask her sometime and she will tell you,) but our running group has offered her a solid community of friends who share her love of Blue Moons, french fries, good music (like Trey Songz) and cutting a rug on the dance floor. She was so inspired by our community that she joined a group of runners training for this year’s Chicago Marathon. Bernadette claims that fellow East Nasties Sarah Brown and Brittany Endres (as well as Christy, Cary, Nick, Sarah S., Gabe, Mardie, Cara, Lauren, and Zach) were the only reason she carried on her training throughout the summer and was able to finish the race.

East Nasties Chicago Marathon 2011

So there you have it, another legendary East Nasty reaching the ultimate goal of ENOW. Be sure to add a comment to this post about why you think Bernadette is wonderful, or you could probably head over to Ugly Mugs and tell her yourself (seeing as how she basically lives there.)

Rod


East Nasty of the Week: Sarah Brown

November 3, 2011

Every time I am at the Ryman Auditorium for a concert, I always scan the crowd to see if I recognize anyone. Almost always I see this new East Nasty of the Week sitting in her favorite seat, the 5th row pews in the lower bowl. Say hello to completely awesome Sarah K. Brown!!!

Sarah was born in Olympia, Washington and at an early age moved to the bright sunshine of Southern California. In the 8th grade her family relocated to Charleston, West Virginia. The differences between So Cal and the heart of Appalachia might have been a bit of a shock to system, but she took it all in stride and made the best of it. She turned her time out in the country into a new hobby of discovering new music and trading tapes of Dave Matthews Band shows. This was the early 90’s were talking about, and DMB was all the rage!

In school Sarah was a bit on the nerdish side of things. Some of here accolades include editor of the high school yearbook, sportscaster for the high school morning TV show, and four years of basketball…even though it was primarily spent on the bench. She did get some playing time as the goal keeper on the girls soccer team her senior year. In her spare time she would occasionally go to “Mountain Stage,” which is recorded for NPR broadcast out of Charleston, WV.

For college Sarah wanted to get as far from West Virginia as possible. She ended up at the University of Washington in Seattle (where she completed her first two years), and then spent a year in Florence, Italy through Gonzaga University. Her time both abroad and in the Northwest were some of Sarah’s best moments in life up to that point, but with a switch of major she ended up at Belmont University to study Finance and Music Business. Her intentions were to head back West after graduation, but she ended up getting a job offer at Belmont, and by the end of two years Nashville had become her new home. Now she is the Event Manager of Belmont University, where she is colleagues with other ENOW SARAH SPENCE!

In 2004 Sarah decided to start working out in order to lose weight. In those early years, she would occasionally walk on the treadmill because she viewed running as a “cruel form of punishment.” In 2008 Sarah took a boot camp at the Y, and from the small amount of running in that class she figured she could run at least a 5K. So in 2009, Sarah began here running career at the Tomato Arts 5K. At that point she had no idea what East Nasty even was.

On her blog  in January of  2010, Sarah listed off a couple of her New Years’ goals. One of them was to run the Country Music Half Marathon that year. The Annie Parsons read it, and left a comment on her post that said she should check out this little running group that met on Wednesday nights. The rest is history.

Since then Sarah has had some major accomplishments in running. To name a couple, the first happened this last summer when she ran a mile in under 7 minutes during the summer speed sessions. The second also happened this summer when she ran her hometown race, the Charleston Distance Run (America’s 15 miler!) Sarah told me that growing up an overweight kid, those were two things that she NEVER thought she would do. So kudos to her!

This summer Sarah also trained with a group of East Nasties to go up to Chicago and run that city’s legendary full marathon. The group trained together two to three times a week, travelled up there together and had a blast representing East Nasty all throughout the “Windy City.” Sarah completed her first marathon in 4:12:09, and ran the entire 26.2 with her bright, friendly smile leading the way. All of her running companions claim that Sarah was a big part of keeping everyone cheerful and excited about the race, both during the training and on race day.

The East Nasties Chicago Full

So there you have, a deserving East Nasty of the Week if I have ever seen one. Please go check out her blog, HERE, and leave a comment on this post.

Rod


Wednesday – July 6th – 2011

July 5, 2011

Hello East Nasty – Am I the only one who thought today was Monday all day long ? Tomorrow we are running route #6 which is called “riverside” as we run up the big hill to the left and out of shelby park all the way up to Riverside. Please review the route as we will need some NEW pacers out there tomorrow.

Trail runs on Sunday are still going strong – we will be meeting at the stone gates in front of percy warner park at 7:00 am again this Sunday. Please see Hunter Lane with any questions you may have about the trails.

Thought of the week  – STAY OUT OFF THE MIDDLE OF THE ROAD. Last Wednesday night there were tons of people running 3 or 4 people across the road. There were also runners running out into the middle of the road in front of oncoming traffic. QUIT DISREGARDING THE RULES OF THE ROAD. We are in a situation where if people keep doing these things then East Nasty may be no more. Run on the sidewalk or pick a side of the road and stay there. Thanks so much


East Nasty of the Week: Meg Willoughby

June 22, 2011

Recently, while making my way through the giant dust bowl known as Bonnaroo this year, I bumped into this new East Nasty of the Week. Turns out it was her first time to the landmark festival in Manchester, TN, and I am not sure she will ever go back. Here are just five of the many things she learned while at the festival this year:

1) Porta-potties are the most disgusting invention of the last century.

2) Wanda Jackson is the coolest old lady EVER.

3) Hula-hoops are the new hacky-sacks and are a not appropriate in crowd situations.

4) If a single food vendor offers deep fried corndogs, spicy thai food and funnel cakes at the same location while flying an Italian flag, chances are the Health Department has not tested them lately.

5) Mumford and Sons is sponsored by Fruit of a Loom ribbed tanks.

Say hello to the one and only, Meg Willoughby!!!

On a hike in Utah

Meg was born just south of here, in Madison, Alabama, right outside of Huntsville. In her early years Meg was a bit of a swimmer, in fact, she may even still hold a couple of state records there. She also played soccer up through middle school, but by the time she got to high school she turned her focus to the arts. She not only created visual art, she also performed in the school plays and even travelled with a performance youth group across the country. Whenever she had some free time in her busy schedule, she would go to “calculus parties” (which I have no idea what those are,) practiced for band competitions, and even went to a couple “French conventions” (again, I have no idea what that is.) Although Meg refers to herself as a geek during those years, she at least knows that she was a cool geek.

After high school Meg decided to attend the Ringling College of Art and Design. YES, the college was created by the infamous Ringling Brothers, but do not worry, Meg did not attend any clown classes during her tenure at the school. She actually majored in graphic design and photography, and as she explained to me, most of her days at school were focused on drawing naked people and doing metal sculpture with a blow torch!

After college Meg moved up to Nashville and began working for the NFL, where she made websites. Later she worked for a major record label in town (rhymes with pony), and her job was to create CD packaging. Another part of Meg’s job was to photoshop some of the wrinkles, fat, and blemishes of the rising country stars. Now she works as a designer for a PR firm.

In 2008 Meg and her friend sat out and watched the runners of the Country Music Marathon. The next year she decided to captain a water stop, and she watched as her older sister ran the half marathon portion of the event. Inspired with the “well if she can, so can I” attitude, Meg set her sights on the 2010 Country Music Half, which she successfully completed. A couple of weeks later, with the running bug still a part of her, she joined East Nasty for a Wednesday night run. She credits her friend Becca Stinson as the reason she stuck with running and with East Nasty. Now she has completed 4 triathlons, 3 half marathons, the Ragnar Relay (with an East Nasty team), and she plans to complete her first full marathon in Huntsville at the Rocket City Marathon in December.

Meg cheering on fellow EN's at the 2010 Rocket City Marathon

In her free time now (besides trying to host calculus parties), she enjoys biking and hiking. She has a life goal of visiting all 58 National Parks…and a goal to never go to Bonnaroo again! Be sure to say hello to Megan this week, and leave a comment below.

Rod