The list that follows chronicles the distinct moments in which Montana made a man out of me;
- The wind... My first hurdle to overcome upon moving to MT in July, was coming to terms with the incessant winds that are so much a part of the climate here on the eastern slope of the Rockies. Running nearly a marathon a day for the 30 days of September 2008, numbed me to this infernal force.
- The people... On a longer run out in the country, I became lost (as in seriously lost in the coulees, with no vantage point to be had). After 18, maybe 20 miles, I was beginning to worry, as the town I was expecting to be nearing, was nowhere in sight. What's worse is the lack of people out in the area. The entire run I saw one car, and that was at about 20 miles. I waved the woman down and she, in turn, being an incredibly kind Montanan, taxied me back to Centerville.
- The terrain... The Le Grizz 50, made a man out of me. After taking the MT 50 mile state champion title for 2008, Miss MT and I joked about me being Mr. MT on account of the USATF title.
- The cold... This winter, without the option of treadmill running, it was either suck it up and run outside, or not run at all. Of course I chose to run outside. It really wasn't a matter of sucking it up either. I came to love running in the cold. It is truly invigorating. -35 degree wind chills on Saturday morning long runs made a man out of me.
- Becoming numb... Ultimately, all of the above, played into becoming, perhaps not so much numb as compliant, at peace with the wonderful place that Montana is. Montana made a man out of me. I have gotten to the point that I am honestly disappointed when it is calm, sunny and 70 degrees out. I now loving in adverse conditions.
Montana made a man out of me.