I hate your workout program
The second semester of the second year of business school is a time for reinforcing friendships, thinking big thoughts about future business endeavors, spending ridiculous amounts of money on
GBEs vacations, and, apparently, getting involved in physical training regimes that are grossly inappropriate to our general level of fitness after 18 months of networking drinking beer.
I believe there are three primary motivators for this workout trend: 1) People at Darden abhor a time vacuum, 2) General recognition that on average people are heavier than when they began at Darden, and 3) Speakers in second year classes peppering their remarks with references to how they participate in triathlons (or other equally physical time-sinks). A perverse combination of unnecessary motivation, a lack of non-academic alternatives, and hyper-competitiveness is currently padding the bottom line of Charlottesville’s church of Crossfit, increasing the trade of second hand copies of P90X, driving up participation in “Navy SEAL Training”, and in my particular case, causing me to pay money now for the right to run on public roads in the Charlottesville half-marathon in April.
One of my least favorite activities in the entire world is running. It is a pointless pursuit which brings me no personal pleasure. It doesn’t clear my head, give me an endorphin rush, or make me feel healthy. It does make me feel like not running. So why run? I have five years of evidence accumulated during my time in the Army to suggest that I am in fact healthier (read: thinner) when I run on a regular basis. Additionally, a friend suggested the idea of running the Athens marathon later this year in order to cross marathon off the life to-do list, and since he went to HBS, it can’t not be a good idea. Thus, I signed up for the Charlottesville half marathon as a personal test case to see if I have either the desire or physical tolerance to train for a full marathon later this year.
After a three year post-Army hiatus from running (or most any physical activity, honestly) I have been taking baby training steps since late December. Sooner or later I’ll get back to real life and my time will be occupied with activities more interesting than running…or maybe I’ll keep running so I can come back to Darden and shame future generations of MBA candidates by telling them about how I simultaneously run a corporation and do yoga and run marathons. It isn’t likely, but it is good to keep your options open.