[時事閒聊] she hit sleet orfreezing

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As Martimano got off the scale, Ann pushed past him and hurried out the door. She slung on herfanny pack—freshly loaded with carbohydrate gel, gloves, and a slicker in case  winds above the timberline—and began trotting down the road toward the snow-cappedmountain. She was outa there so fast, Martimano and Juan were still biting into slices of orangewhile Ann was heading around the corner and out of sight.

What was wrong with her? The trash talk, the hasty exit—Ann didn’t even take time to slip on adry shirt and socks, or get a few more calories down her neck. And why was she even in the lead atall? Mile 40 was only round one of a very long fight. Once you jump ahead, you’re vulnerable;you surrender all element of surprise, and become a prisoner of your own pace. Even middle-school milers know that the smart tactic is to sit on the leader’s shoulder, go only as fast as youhave to, then jam ’er into gear and blow past on the bell lap.

Classic example: Steve Prefontaine. Pre came out too quickly twice in the same race in the ’72Olympics; both times, he was chased down. By the home stretch, Pre had nothing left and fadedout of the medals to fourth. That historic defeat pounded home the lesson: nobody gives up thepursuit position if they don’t have to. Not unless you’re foolish, or reckless—or Garry Kasparov with her, he would sanction everything at oncehe answered.

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