With Cross Country season approaching I wanted to recommend a good summer book, (which is coincidentally available at Run Moore!), that I’ve read many times over the years. Running with the Buffaloes by Chris Lear, follows the 1998 University of Colorado cross country team from the first day they report to summer practice, all the way through Nationals.
The 1998 team, and focal point of the book, featured Adam Goucher and was coached by the legendary Mark Wetmore. Written as daily journal entries, the book offers unmatched insight into what elite young men and women at the highest collegiate level are doing. The author, a local and friend of Goucher, thought it would be interesting to follow an elite team around for an entire season to see what makes them tick, and maybe ascertain some novel training secrets. As readers, we find ourselves lucky that Chris came from this area, at this moment in history. Nothing could have prepared him, or the team, for what transpired over that season.
The book took me back to my own days of running cross country and illuminates many of the idiosyncrasies of distance runners. I had quite a few LOL’s, as well as a few gazes in the mirror to realize that, in hindsight, I trained like a wimp. Running with the Buffaloes has helped motivate me when I needed a kick in the butt, and helped me better appreciate what I was a part of all those years back. It also makes me appreciate the bonds I have with the brothers I pounded the town with, as we trained for cross country. I am blessed to have maintained friendships with my high school and college cross country teammates. Nothing brings people together like the blood, sweat and tears of cross country running. Reading this book you can feel the bonds that are formed between these teammates.
I hope you can appreciate my being so vague, but I really don’t want to give too much away. This book takes you on a journey through a range of emotions and I hope everyone who reads it approaches it with an unbiased perspective going in. I advise you to skip the acknowledgments and foreword, so as not to know any of the events that take place in the book. Go to page 1, turn off your phone, kick your feet back and take a trip to Bolder Colorado and go Running with the Buffaloes.