“Wanna go to a movie at the Riverview Theater? It’s about running!” -me
…An hour before the movie starts and we are heading into the theater (Minneapolis/St. Paul has a BIG running community, so we arrived rather early to make sure we grabbed good seats and popcorn)…
“So I don’t even know what this movie is about, but I am sure it’ll be good.” -wife
Such trust she has in me! Anyway, the HIGHLY anticipated film was Run Free: The True Story of Caballo Blanco. The documentary is making its way around the United States, and as of last night, the Twin Cities had the largest crowd yet of over 400. The movie promotor introduced the movie by sharing a recent viewer he ran into on the trail who said the film made her laugh a lot and cry…
Micah True, later dubbed Caballo Blanco (‘White Horse’), ran ultra distances in Colorado during his younger years and eventually made his way to Mexico and essentially lived mostly off the grid. He gradually made friends with the Tarahumara Indians and ran even more ultra distances in Northern Mexico. For a guy who ran and lived simply, his name became rather well-known following the release of the best-selling book Born to Run–A Hidden Tribe, Super Athletes and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen. Check out that book for an entertaining non-fiction story of Caballo Blanco, Barefoot Ted, Scott Jurek (an ultra runner from Minnesota!) and the 50 mile race Caballo Blanco created in the Copper Canyons to benefit his friends, the Tarahumara, and their running history. The rest is history, recent history, as the man known as Caballo Blanco died in 2012. Based on solely the reaction of the fellow Twin Cities runners who filled the Riverview Theater, the film was a fitting tribute to a long distance running legend, one of the Mas Locos who lived by the unwritten code of providing opportunities for others while expecting nothing in return.
Create Opportunities, for Others
Running could be considered an inherently selfish sport. But to stay sane, don’t we need an outlet to just be ourselves, to let our minds wander or perhaps conversely, the opportunity to work toward a goal? Running provides for the individual. And with that, the individual can better provide for the ‘group,’ whomever they may be.
Running, for me, is simply something I love to do and so much more. Back to Run Free, this idea came across as the essence of Caballo Blanco. He loved running, and was better for it. Except he did not let the good stop there. He found a way to connect with people, of varying backgrounds and cultures, through running. Then he went a step, a million steps, further by creating an ultra marathon that provides tons of food to families that desperately need it.
Admittedly, today I feel quite focused on the individual aspect of running. My brain and soul and legs need that attention. Fortunately that includes running with friends and family. A couple times a month that means encouraging that new runner who steps into my favorite local running store. In the future, that will include teaching another round of learn to run clinics and ideally also includes other ideas I haven’t even considered yet. I see another post in the works specifically listing how to create opportunities, for others.