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The Penguin Archives

Category Archives: The Penguin Archives

Correct and Redirect

By | The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | No Comments

Starting out without starting over You never know when some tidbit of wisdom is going to drop into your life. Often the most salient advice comes when you least expect it. Like when getting a haircut. I’ve always had issues with my hair. As a kid, when I went to the barber it was a matter of sitting in a chair while this giant man with clippers ground away at my head. It ranked second only to going to the dentist as a frightening, helpless experience. Of course, there are no barbers anymore. At least none that I can find….

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Body Language

By | The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | 2 Comments

I thought my sturdy frame could take just about anything – until it talked back. Early this year, I was running often and well, doing more speed workouts (okay, maybe not technically speed workouts, but certainly less-slow workouts) and looking forward to racing a 10-K. Then I spent nearly four weeks traveling on planes, boats, and buses to Argentina and Antarctica, with the final leg of my trip totaling 27 hours of sitting. It was a recipe for disaster. Once back at home, I bent over to put a small package on the floor. There was no getting back up….

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A Walk in the Park

By | Personal, The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | No Comments

One of my favorite runs in London is through Hyde Park. No big surprise. There may not be a more beautiful inner city run anywhere in the world. What may be a surprise to those who simply put on their trainers and run their workout is the full complement of activities going on simultaneously. The park is a smorgasbord of people enjoying their own versions of sport and leisure. To focus on only our own activity is to miss the richness of the mix. In a single hour of a single day in Hyde Park, I’ve seen horses and bicycles,…

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A Walk in the Park

By | The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | No Comments

One of my favorite runs in London is through Hyde Park. No big surprise. There may not be a more beautiful inner city run anywhere in the world. What may be a surprise to those who simply put on their trainers and run their workout is the full complement of activities going on simultaneously. The park is a smorgasbord of people enjoying their own versions of sport and leisure. To focus on only our own activity is to miss the richness of the mix. In a single hour of a single day in Hyde Park, I’ve seen horses and bicycles,…

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A Change of Course

By | John "the Penguin" Bingham, Motivation, Penguin, The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | One Comment

Sometimes we need to rethink what it means to succeed. Sometimes you meet a person and you just know that he or she has a life lesson to share. That’s what happened when I met Mike in March. We and about 80 other runners were aboard the Ocean Nova, bound for Antarctica where we would run the Antarctica Marathon or Half-Marathon. At first glance, there was nothing remarkable about Mike. He seemed to be just another middle-aged man, carrying a few extra pounds, whose glory days as a runner were back in the nylon shorts era. As often happens when…

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Summer Vacation

By | Bingham, Personal, The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | One Comment

Growing up in the 1950s did have some advantages. No, we didn’t have color TV, let alone cable. We didn’t have Playstations or Game Cubes. We didn’t have MP3 players, iPods or cell phones. But one thing we did have was summer vacations. Long, lazy days filled with hope and promise unencumbered by adult organization. Whatever fun we were going to have would have to come from our own imaginations. There were no alarm clocks on those long summer days. The day started when some friend stood outside your house and called your name. The closest you came to planning…

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Setting the Sail

By | Personal, The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | No Comments

As runners, we need to cut ourselves some slack to ensure smooth sailing. I’m sure there are times when the magic of being pushed across the water by the power of the wind is exhilarating. But every time I’ve tried to captain a sailboat, the wind has nearly pushed me into the rocks. Clearly, I’m not much of a sailor. My problems have to do with leeway, or, more precisely, the lack of leeway. You see, a sailboat has two sides: the windward side, which faces the wind, and the leeward side, which is away from the wind. A sailboat…

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Come Together

By | Bingham, John "the Penguin" Bingham, Personal, The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | No Comments

You might be surprised what Nietzsche and your running buddies have in common. The German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche really got a bad rap. Either that or he needed a better publicist. There was that whole “God is dead” business that upset so many people and then there’s the “That which doesn’t kill us makes us stronger” quote that’s attributed to him. I actually read one of my favorite Nietzsche quotes in an Outward Bound handbook. In writing about mountain climbing, our boy Friedrich says, “Exhaustion is the shortest way to equality…” I’ve never climbed a mountain so I can’t attest…

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White Line Fever

By | Bingham, John "the Penguin" Bingham, Motorcycling, The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | No Comments

Believe it or not, the human machine can equal the power of a Harley. Until I discovered running, I had only two passions in life: music and motorcycles. Each fueled the other, and employment in one usually meant greater opportunities to pursue the other. For many years, this combination was perfect – I worked long enough as a freelance musician to build a financial base, then rode long enough to need the next gig. Maintaining the balance between time and money was tricky, but with care and a willingness to consume nothing more than peanut butter and beer, it was…

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My Way or the Highway

By | Personal, The Penguin Archives, The Penguin Chronicles | No Comments

Sometimes it pays to ask for directions. My wife, Jenny, recently gave me a GPS navigation unit – not the kind you run with but the kind for your car. Plug in your destination, and the GPS calculates directions. Mine had a name (Jack) and a voice that talks you through the directions. I was so excited to go on my first test-drive with Jack. I punched in my destination – my son’s house – and eagerly waited for Jack to figure out how to get there. Of course, I knew the way. I simply wanted to have some fun…

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