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Running Around the World

I’ve been a dedicated runner for about five years now, and a casual one for several years before that. I find that running is the best overall exercise I can do, and the minimalist in me enjoys the fact that running is very low-tech. All you need are some decent running shoes – no fancy equipment or nice clothes are necessary. I like to listen to music when I run, but other than an iPod shuffle, I don’t take anything with me.

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What They Say About Winners

Congratulations to the great Lance Armstrong on his third-place victory in Paris yesterday.

I'm aware that third place is not a real victory. Lance knows this too, and said so himself in the post-race interviews. However, when you've been out of the tour for four years, you broke your collarbone a few months ago, and you're more than a decade older than the teammate who ended up winning, I think that third place is pretty good.

Lance is still a winner in my book. He's already planning to come back next year, and I'm pretty sure he won't settle for a mere third place out of 180 riders in 2010.

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Weekend Update: Writing Contest, Social Web, + Portland Meetup

There’s a heat wave in Portland! It’s 93° today, but I managed to survive my weekly long run this morning. I love running in my home city, especially when I don’t get lost.

A few announcements for this weekend update: Our Unconventional Writing Contest has now ended. A trusted adviser from Australia is going through the initial pack of entries, and we’ll get some more feedback from other members of the Supreme Court before narrowing down the finalists over the next couple of weeks.

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Video Update: Why Visit Saudi Arabia?

This video update was recorded at sunrise in Kowloon Park, Hong Kong – but it’s actually about Saudi Arabia, the last stop of my recent global tour. It clocks in at 3 minutes and 55 seconds. If you can’t view the video, here is a quick summary — What can I say about Saudi Arabia that’s flattering? Not a whole lot, to be honest. The most interesting thing was nearly being deported immediately after landing at Riyadh International Airport. In retrospect, it’s fun to remember six airport officials having an extended discussion in Arabic about which country they would like to send me too. At the time, I wouldn’t have minded being somewhere else.

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Personal Responsibility and Showing Up

To be truly awesome, you have to go above and beyond the efforts of those around you, look for alternative solutions, and refuse to back down from the truth. There's a whole article about it for those who are curious.

But it all starts with showing up. Or, as a friend of mine puts it:

"I'm sorry you feel bad about not meeting your goals -- what I would suggest is that you begin meeting your goals, in order to feel better."

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Continuous Improvement, Malaysian Edition

I'm home! What a great trip – I had a nice swing throu South America, successfully avoided deportation in Saudi Arabia, and met with friends and readers at five stops along the way. On the last leg of the trip I picked up what I call "swine flu lite" – I'm not dying, but I haven't been able to do much of anything over the past couple of days. Since I don't get sick very often, I figure I might as well go all the way when it happens. Who needs moderation?

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Going to Extremes

On the flight back from South America last week, the airline was showing Yes Man, a film starring Jim Carrey. Left to my own devices, I rarely finish a movie, but I watched the first two-thirds of this one and thought it was great. The premise of Yes Man is that a guy who usually says no to everything - requests from friends, growth opportunities at work, and so on - has to make a sudden switch where his default answer becomes yes to any request he encounters.

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Site Update: July 2009

Greetings from Malaysia, my home for most of this week before heading back to my real home on Thursday. After nearly getting deported from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia a few days ago, I managed to deport myself a few days later to fly this direction. It’s a really long story, one that I look forward to ...

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This Is How it Begins

I previously wrote about how a long trip begins from Seattle. I didn’t have a car there either, but public transport required a high threshold of patience and pain. In Seattle it took up to two hours to begin a trip, which was especially interesting when the first flight was at 6:00 a.m.

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