Larry Savitch, 7 timer at Reggae Marathon keeps on running! And every year he runs right back to Negril for Reggae Marathon!
I was born in the Bronx, New York, raised in upstate New York and currently live in Florida. No, not the sunny, warm state of Florida…Florida, New York. I’ve been running on and off since I learned how to walk…you know, the crawl, walk, run thing. I ran track in high school mostly as a sprinter. I hated the distance thing. As an adult, I ran on and off for years still hating the distance thing. Then came the ‘aha’ moment: Armed with a heart rate monitor I started road running in earnest in 2003 . 14 years later and with 175+ road races completed, here I am looking forward to my 8th consecutive Reggae Marathon Event.
I started running because it’s the most natural thing to do. I started racing for the challenge. I like the sense of accomplishment and competition even if it is only against myself. Running also brings calm and ‘zen’ to my life. Once I settle into a rhythm in both breathing and foot falls, everything else falls into place. At least until the run is over. That being said, I’m a fair weather runner and unless I’m in the midst of training for a long race, I hate being outside in less than 60 F degree and sunny conditions.
I heard about Reggae Marathon through a Google search. Believe it or not, I Googled, ‘Warm destination half marathons in December where there are palm trees greenish blue water and I can take a vacation with friends and drink beer’. Yes, a little wordy but it did come back with the perfect race. Reggae Marathon checked all the boxes and had even more of what I was looking for in a race: Beautiful country, beautiful people, great course, sun, sand, water, coconuts and of course beer!
Each year at Reggae Marathon I’ve travelled to Negril with my wife Karen and a small group of friends. Together we make up the ‘Easy Skankin’ Reggae Marathon group. Easy Skankin is the title of a Bob Marley song from the Kaya album. Each year we show up at the ‘World’s Best Pasta Party’ in a custom made t-shirt with a Bob Marley song quote. We have quite the collection now!
The Reggae Marathon is a very special race for me. It means a lot more that beaches, beer and t-shirts. Not only is it a well organized race, it has brought me several friendships I did not expect. Over the years I’ve forged close, loving relationships with the Race Organizers, Frano and Diane, and several of the runners. I have never been involved with a race where I have so many friendships: Some on Social Media and others I’ve met on the course. These are people I keep in touch with throughout the entire year and then get to spend time with while down in Jamaica. These people mean the world to me! No race has brought these kinds of relations ever! I have nothing but ‘One Love’ and immense gratitude for what Reggae Marathon has brought to my life.
Until next time…
Reggae Marathon RunninGuy (aka Sugar ‘Tuff Gong’ Bong)