Saturday, January 04, 2014

In Defence of Janathon (Day 4)

Run (treadmill) - 5km, 29 minutes

Yesterday I was amused by a small conversation on Twiter. It started with @simon_lamb saying: 
What the fuck is janathon & jantastic does every single piece of our ass need to be sloganised what's wrong with good old fashioned running
This is fair enough, it’s the sort of grumpy thing everyone says about something at sometime or other, but then it got better. @pollyfarrington replied
are they the same thing? I started reading the rules and almost died of boredom
Now the rules of Janathon couldn’t be more simple: do some form of exercise every day for a month, log it, then blog it. That’s it - everything you need to know in 15 words. That’s all there is.  I assume Polly’s mortal scare was slightly exaggerated. But then came the best bit, a contribution from @goldilocksruns that is wonderfully absurd.
I must say Janathon seems like a creation of fascism and misery
Where do we go with this? My first reaction was that it was a little early to invoke Goodwins Law - but that is by the bye. My main reaction was enjoyment of something so completely wrong it could become the new slogan. (Actually it is so wide of the mark it almost deserves  the Wolfgang Pauli put down of being so bad it’s not even wrong).

Let us go back to the very beginning in 2007, when blogger joggerblogger decided he needed to get a fitter and challenged himself and others to run everyday in June (here is the first post, the small beginnings). It was just an informal grouping of virtual friends who decided to join in and support each other. At heart that is all it ever has been is what it  remains, even if it has grown in size and now includes January. Everybody chooses what they want to do (how much or how little, it doesn’t matter) then they document it so others can read and post encouraging comments. If there is a failure one day there is bound to be someone to tell you that it is OK and you are  still doing well.

The fun is that it is an informal grouping of people, each with their own abilities and goals, who can find a common cause. It doesn’t matter that some are finely tuned athletes others (ahem,like me) are less so. All we try to do is find satisfaction in our exercise and then share the experience. 

It is the very reverse of a system of centralised dictats that characterises fascism. It is for amusement rather than misery. Read Jogblog, read Travelling Hopefully, or Fit Artist (who isn't doing Janathon this year but who has been one of the stalwarts from the beginning) and judge  whether they seem like flinty eyed, stoney faced, jack booted oppressors.

P.S. Today’s run was meant to be outdoors but strong, blustery winds driving heavy rain persuaded me otherwise. As runs on a treadmill go it was fine.


JogBlog said...

Thank you! And I'm glad you're still joining in the fun/fascism after all these years, wouldn't be the same without you.

Adele said...

Ah, thanks for defending our little world and reminding me - and others - where it all started. I might not be taking part this time, but I follow with interest and feel inspired and encouraged even from afar. Go, go, go!

Anonymous said...

Makes me so glad I don't tweet!

John Roughley said...

As we say in the north, "there's nowt so queer as folk" which translates to, "there are some miserable b@stards out there"

Black and Tabby said...

Any fascist that allows the now infamous 'bar press-up' as a Janathon activity should turn their badge in now :-)