Converting to the Runningites

20091101 Theoden with Bart Yasso

Recent Runningite convert Theoden Janes (right) with High Priest Bart Yasso

Running is my religion.  I converted to the Runningites in 1984 when I joined the sect of the University of North Carolina Track and Field team.  After backsliding for many years, I recently found my way back into the light.  I have been saved from the bondage of the couch and baptized in the holy perspiration of running. 

Some of our rituals involve contorting our bodies in all manner of stretch before our weekly worship service, usually a 5 or 10-kilometer race.  After the race, er service, we fellowship over orange wedges and bottled water.  Together we partake of our holy communion: Powerbars and Gatorade. 

Our saints include Steve Prefontaine and Emil Zatopek.  Our high priests are Bart Yasso and Alberto Salazar; our priestesses, Kara Goucher and Paula Radcliffe

Our holy garb includes running shoes, GPS watches, racing singlets, calf compression sleeves, and that holiest of all vestments, the racing bib.

My god rewards the faithfulness of his followers by melting away their body fat and replacing it with tight cords of lean muscle mass.  Disciples who could barely walk from the couch to the fridge a year ago now run 26.2 miles. 

While the Catholics recite the rosary, Runningites pound out mile repeats.  While the Baptists sing hymns, Runningnites run trails.  The Hindus’ holy animal is the cow.  Ours is the cheetah.

Every year, thousands of Runningites make pilgrimages to such holy sites as Chicago and New York, but only a select few, only the holiest of the holy, are allowed to travel to our mecca.  Next Saturday, I make my pilgrimage to Richmond to participate in our holiest of ceremonies, the running of the marathon.  If I perform extremely well, I will be allowed to travel to the Holy Land – Boston.  Fellow Runningites, please pray that I run swiftly so that I may one day set my eyes upon the promised land.


5 Responses to “Converting to the Runningites”

  1. Gina Says:

    Amen, brother.

  2. clark Says:


  3. Bill Says:

    I enjoyed this. I look forward to reading about your Richmond experience. Also, thanks for converting me. My family and doctor thank you too.

  4. Aaron Says:

    Amen brother! Get yourself to the promised land so we can see each other on the sacrid course.

  5. caitlin Says:

    that was great!!! Go get em this weekend!!!

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