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It’s been hitting the wire releases that Sarah Palin, running under her maiden name, finished a half marathon in Iowa, second in her age group. I found that impressive, for not being a runner and for knowing I wouldn’t want walk the 21 some kilometers she finished with a time of 1:46:10. Even if you know nothing about running and what might be a good time for that event, as you compare her time against other (and younger) runners, men and woman, you have to conclude that she’s was competitive. (Race results linked below.) Her running was a part of who she is I knew nothing about. Intrigued, I looked further and discovered a 4-page interview with her done by Runner’s World (also linked below) from which I’ve made short excerpts.

When did you start running?
I grew up in a running family. My parents caught the running craze in the mid '70s and we grew up doing family runs. I've been running now easy for 35 years.

What did your parents teach you about running?
They taught me self-discipline and goal setting. The self-discipline it took for my dad to train for and qualify for Boston, eating healthy and getting up in those Alaskan morning conditions where it would be 20 below. To see that example of what it takes to accomplish a goal, the determination it took, taught me so much. He used to tell us to call on the rock during a race when we were hurting and we were tired and wanted to quit. He always told us to articulate what it is we've trained for, what it is we're prepared for, and hold onto it when it hurts so bad in a race. We all have a different rock, but Dad inspired us with the knowledge that we could reach down deep and get strength from it. And that's not just a lesson when you're out there dying on the 23rd mile of a marathon but one for getting through daily life. Sometimes you've got to call upon your rock to get through the tough times.

What has running taught you about politics?
Same thing it's taught me about life: You have to have determination and set goals, and you don't complain when something's hurting because no one wants to hear it. You get bummed and burned out sometimes in running and in politics, but if you're in for the long haul and you're in it because you know that it is a good thing, then you get out there and you do it anyway.

Maybe it’s just me, who wants to see in bond-investing a microcosm of life, but her answers about the discipline needed to run apply equally to the discipline needed to achieve investing success.

Go, Sarah. Go!
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