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Re: [RC] Defining Endurance - Joe Long

On Tue, 08 Aug 2006 19:48:02 -0700, "Beverley H. Kane, MD"
<sensei@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

The definition of endurance is always relative to the envelope that the
individual is pushing.

Recently I ordered the promotional packet from the Arabian Horse
Association. On one page there is a picture of a woman born without legs and
with only one arm, sitting on a calm (aren't they all that way? suggests the
ad) Arabian. I imagine that at first, riding once around the ring was a
major feat of endurance for her.

For several years, I worked in hippotherapy and therapeutic riding
facilities. One client was a woman with chronic fatigue immune deficiency
syndrome. It was all she could do to endure each lesson merely walking on a
lead rope. At the end of 45 minutes of willful exertion on her part, she
looked as exhausted as I felt after a 50.

For many people w/ disabilities/injuries, fears, or inexperience, an LD is
an Olympic event.

Indeed.  I've told this story before, so those of you who've seen it
can just skip the rest of this.

My first wife had a serious heart ailment.  She would turn blue
(literally) climbing one flight of stairs.  It was a real challenge
for her to ride even a few miles.  But she wanted so badly to ride an
LD ride.

So one fine day, we set out together on a 25-mile LD ride.  She
literally risked her life to do so -- she could have brought on a
heart attack and died on the trail.  But she finished!  She was so
happy, and I was so proud of her.  We were both ecstatic.  That 25
miles was far tougher for her, and a greater risk for her, than the
most tough 100's are for most of us.

But would she have considered herself an endurance rider for having
done an LD?  Not on your life!  She wasn't made that way.

Events like Marathons and endurance rides are defined by the
parameters of the event (such as length and time) and not by the
abilities of the participants.

Joe Long


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[RC] Defining Endurance, Beverley H. Kane, MD