Featured Member Profile - Doug "Dirtbag" Robertson

Discussion in 'Front Page News' started by macmhagan, Jul 16, 2011.

  1. macmhagan

    macmhagan Barefooters
    1. Virginia
    2. District of...

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    Featured Member ProfileDoug "Dirtbag" RobertsonIs it time for recess yet?
    Doug, or Dirtbag as we know him at BRS, is a 29 year-old triathlete & 4th grade teacher living in Wahiawa, Hawaii, with his wife Angela, and um, others: “My wife has an imaginary dog named Jack that we don't own yet but will as soon as we live somewhere dog-friendly. It seems we also have an imaginary goat with no name as of yet.” (Gentle question: Angela isn’t imaginary too is she?)

    He’s lived in Hawaii 4 years, though it was a natural relocation, having come from Palmdale, California, originally, and studying at the University of the Pacific Stockton where he obtained his BA Education. “I love teaching. Because I love children. Kids are insane in a way most adults forget, but in a good way. I like talking to them, working with them, and seeing what bright light click on behind their eyes. Also, when a child is dumb or ignorant it's because they are a child and they kind of should be. They don't know any better and we can teach them not to be. A dumb, ignorant adult has no excuse. And I love to coach and help people improve. I was a lifeguard for ten years and teaching swim lessons to adults and children is one of the highlights of my formative years.”

    Though training for triathlons takes a ton of his time, when not swimming, biking,or running he can be found playing video games on the PS3; reading (science fiction, fantasy, biographies, nonfiction, classics, graphic novels, whatever); writing massively long blog posts about the forty-mile ride he just went on or the race he just did; and, of course, spending time with his wife and their fake dog and goat.

    While barefoot/minimalist runners are definitely leaning toward the odd, Doug takes it even further: “I'm a complete nerd. The more esoteric the science fiction reference the better. I value people who get jokes that only one or two people in any normal room would get. I'd fill rooms with those people and then we would try to out-geek each other. I will have complete conversations with friends using nothing but Monty Python and Spinal Tap lines. I am the anti-shy. I also have negative personal space, which means I'm not comfortable unless I'm somehow invading your personal space. Also, I'm huge in to rock and roll, punk, and heavy metal. A friend and I invented a disease we call SOSMS, which stands for Sudden Onset Slayer Moment Syndrome. A Sudden Onset Slayer Moment (SOSM) is when for no reason at all, you suddenly must thrash, headbang, and play air guitar for a brief, explosive period of time. Music is not required. Note: this is much fun at the store.”

    Doug has been running for 12 years, however, it only became fun about a year ago when he bought his first pair of KSOs, and it was instant love after so many years of hurting knees and his shoes wearing out all the time. Well, but he admits he promptly did too much too soon, hurting a foot and having to take a month off. Then Doug started learning how to run correctly: slowly.

    “My most memorable running experience, and this is cliché for this website, is the first time I went minimalist: partially because of how free I felt, but mostly because I didn't hate running as soon as I put those VFFs on. I'd never enjoyed running; it was just part of my workout regimen I did before I lifted weights because cardio's important. But running in KSOs the first time was earth-shaking. I never went back. And then, like so many of us, I read Born to Run. The day I finished the book I believed I actually could run for real, that it should be a fun thing, and that it was something I should be able to do. And I went looking for a triathlon. Running a half marathon or a whole didn't interest me, I'm a swimmer first. I'd always admired triathlons from a distance. And once I finished the book I decided that I needed to do at least one. Now I've completed four Sprints and an Olympic, and I can't wait for more. All because of that book. Most. Expensive. Book. Ever.”

    Doug’s favorite distance is presently the 5k, but he’s working up to a 10k. His favorite race: “Answering this question is actually why it's taken me so long to complete this profile. I was waiting until I finished the Honolulu Olympic Triathlon . Honestly, while it was a good race and I'm proud of how I did, I don't think it was my favorite. That would have to go to the Guard Dog Sprint Tri I did a few weeks ago. Everything went right. My swim felt solid, my ride was fast, and the run was the best I'd done to that point. It rained the whole time, which was less than awesome, but I performed above my expectations. It was honestly fun. And I podiumed in my age group, which doesn't suck . 3rd place!” (Okay Doug, you’re forgiven for taking so long. Your profile editor is the actual slacker now.)

    PRs:

    5K: 24:44

    10K: 52:02 but I think I threw down some training runs which were faster.

    This time was after a 1500yd swim and a 25-mile bike ride.

    Sprint Tri: 59:19 (500yd swim/10mi ride/3mi run)

    Olympic Tri: 2:31:21 (1500yd swim/25mi ride/6mi run)

    Doug is one of BRSs exclusive minimalists, running barefoot rarely, on recovery days or as a form-fix. “I enjoy running because: It makes me feel strong, and I can see improvement all the time. Even in small things. But I feel like when I'm running (or swimming or biking) my fitness line is on a constant incline. There are small plateaus here and there, but I am constantly searching for ways to make myself better. And that's what I want. I want to push my limits. Running allows me to do that.”

    Doug joined Barefoot Runners Society 10 months ago because he was looking for help to prevent doing too much too soon again and found the BRS. “Turns out there are a lot of weird runners like me. AND, they are pretty interesting and funny. Some of my best interweb friends (people I don't actually know but do know through the magic of this series of tubes called the Interwebs) are on here.”

    Other Running Club Memberships:“I invented my own fitness team when I started doing triathlons. We are Dirtbag Fitness and all types are welcome at Team Dirtbag.”

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  2. Dirtbag

    Dirtbag Barefooters
    1. Hawaii

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    Hey, I'm famous now! Nice write up.

    I promise Angela is real. Cross my heart.
     

  3. stjohnthegambler

    stjohnthegambler Barefooters
    1. Colorado

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