Podcast: Episode 179 with George Hirsch


If there’s stressful stuff, and who doesn’t have that, the run eases it. It absolutely does. We hear this, of course, from lots of people, and more and more people are figuring out what’s going on in terms of brain chemistry—it eases anxiety and stress, I’m talking about serious stress with people, clinical anxiety—but I feel that. And so years and years ago I kind of assumed a mantra, if you will, and that is you come home from work and haven’t run, and it is, ‘When in doubt, do it.’ And it’s served me well, and it still doesn’t mean I haven’t missed some days, but if I’m kind of on the fence, I’m a little tired, I don’t feel up to it, a lot on my mind—get out the door, get in some miles, and I always find that I’m better off for it.” 

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The 50th running of the New York City Marathon is just a couple weekends away and who better to talk to about it than George Hirsch, chairman of the New York Road Runners, and someone who has been involved with the event to one degree or another since its beginnings. 

This conversation was a real treat for me. We spent half of it talking about the New York City Marathon, its history, its stories, its allure, and more. We also discussed how all of those things went into a new book called The New York City Marathon: 50 Years Running, which is a coffee table keepsake that I’m really enjoying right now. I also got George to tell me more about himself, his legendary career in publishing, which included a stint at Runner’s World during its heyday, how he got his start in running back in the 1960s, what keeps him running six days a week at the age of 87, how his relationship to it has evolved over the decades, and a lot more. 

George Hirsch: Bio | Book

the morning shakeout: Instagram | Twitter

Mario Fraioli: Website | Strava

This episode is brought to you by:

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Music and editing for this episode of the morning shakeout podcast by John Summerford.

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