Once again, Mark Noviski and NPSF’s #rungang provide us with a riveting anthology of classic novels, inspiring tales and marvelous epics. This collection is set to be a common find under the Christmas tree this year. For readers outside of SF, if you want to experience #rungang live, book that trip, drop that verbal, and join #rungang along the route to Fort Mason, Alta Plaza and to our assortment of hill locations.
THE WIZARD OF RUNGANG
As I contemplated the long journey ahead of me, I set my sights on the end of the yellow brick road. I caught a glimmer of Dori and some pancakes far off in the distance, but valleys unknown lay ahead of me. I knew I’d have to run 3 miles in the dark and do a half hour of crushing hill repeats, but maybe I wouldn’t have to do it alone.
First I ran into Lillian Christina who was looking distraught because she lost her fleece. I had already warmed up after a half mile of parking lots and drug dealers, so I gave Lillian my fleece and she joined me for the journey.
Then I ran into Lindsay Bolt who was bewildered that her hair had lost its signature pink glow. I told her not to worry. The end of the road is filled with all the neon she could possibly want.
The three of us crossed the panhandle and ran into Tim Johnson who was forlorn because his knees had gone missing. He joined in after we reassured him that we always feel our knees at the end of NPSP hill workouts.
Did I run into any other characters on my way to #hillsforbreakfast? Drop a#verbal and find out!
THE RUNGANG OF WRATH
The clouds moved in on our barren landscape. A drought was upon us, and we had gone two days without a drop of #freefitness. It was clear that none would be found in our homeland, so we left the comfort of our beds and embarked before the crack of dawn. There were many like us along the way, and they joined us on our long northward journey. We dodged cars, bicycles, and raccoons, hoping that we would find a lush land of burpees and air squats at the end. Sweat dripped down our faces as we ran into the fort and saw the Golden Gate Bridge shimmering in the distance. We made it. Little did we know the hardest part was yet to come…
THE GREAT PADSBY
He hosts extravagant workouts, yet he rarely participates in them himself. They draw crowds from all over the region and produce unreasonable amounts of pleasure and entertainment. Where did this mysterious man gain his immense athletic prowess? Many theories have been put forward, and some wonder if he’s even human. He’s rumored to stand at the top of Alta Plaza staring at the glowing headlamps of #rungang as they flicker across the city. I hear he’s hosting quite an event tomorrow at 6:24 AM. You’d better drop a #verbal and don your most vibrant neon outfits!
BROKEN VERBALS AND PUNISHMENT
Broken verbals. We come up with all sorts of excuses for why they’re justified, but in the end, a broken verbal is still a broken verbal. They take less than an hour to commit, but the ramifications last for much longer. The immediate consequence of missing a workout fades into a long-term psychological battle filled with tremendous guilt and “We Missed You” posts. The prescribed punishment may be a post on the NP website, but the real punishment is coming to terms with being a verbal breaker. I could go on, but let’s leave reading through 500 pages of psychological anguish to the high school students.
Now that you’re thoroughly demoralized, drop a #verbal for our long northeastern trek to Siberia (Telegraph Hill)!
BRAVE NEW WORKOUT
The world had been in stable equilibrium for decades. All humans were sorted into one of five groups and conditioned at birth to embrace their label: Lambda (lazy), Mu (morning), Nu (night), Omicron (overworked), and Pi (pay for progress). The population was addicted to a widely available drug called Kardashia and people greeted each other with an impersonal gesture called a handshake. Fitness, or lack thereof, was meant to be obtained in a controlled manner dictated by the overlords.
Lambdas never even though about working out and considered it a cruel form of torture. Mus maintained a rigorous fitness regimen at sunrise but were prohibited from interacting with others during their routines. Nus spent their nights in gyms trying to get muscles bigger than watermelons. Omicrons had erratic schedules and often skipped workouts because they stayed at work late or had too many prior commitments. Pis followed the latest fitness trends and bought strange contraptions they saw on TV or paid for expensive personal trainers and boutique gym memberships. Everyone seemed to follow their government-sanctioned routine without complaining…
Except for Laura McCloskey. She thought it was bullshit. Those labels are all in our heads. You don’t have to be born a Mu to work out in the morning. You shouldn’t have to pay for a fancy gym membership to get fit. You shouldn’t have to work out alone. You should hug your fellow humans! It’s time to throw away your labels and join Laura for a secret, rebellious workout at Fort Mason. Come #stormthefort with me!
STEEP HILLS AND LAM
Do you like steep hills and Lam?
I do not like them, Sam I am.
Would you like them in the dark?
Would you like them in a park?
I would not like them in the dark
I would not like them in the park
I would not like them with Tim or Mark
Would you run them for a thrill?
Would you run them just to chill?
I would not run them for a thrill
I would not run them just to chill
I would not run them with Mama Lil
You do not like them, so you say.
Run them, hug her, and you may!
Say! I like steep hills and Lam.
I do! I like them, Sam I am!
And I would like them in the dark
And I would like them in a park
And I would like them with Tim and Mark!
So I will run them for a thrill
And I will run them just to chill
And I will run them with Mama Lil!
I do so like steep hills and Lam.
I’ll drop a #verbal, Sam I am!
PERRY POTTER AND THE HALF-ASSED SPRINTS
Every time we feel like our world is about to fall apart, Perry conjures up a Google Doc just in the nick of time. He’s still learning the ropes, but everyone knows how much potential he has. Will he lead us in our fight against the evils of dark fitness? The move-that-must-not-be-made has been infiltrating our workouts, and no matter how hard Pádraig Ó-Dumbledore tries, we are still fighting a battle against the half-assed sprints. They come in packs with their leader, the Verbish, and suck the enthusiasm out of our workouts. The only way to fight them off is to picture yourself PRing in your next race, scream “fuck yeah!” and kick some butt during the workout. Drop a #verbal to join #rungang for #stormthefort and make tomorrow magical!
FIFTY SHAMES OF NAY
He was a successful entrepreneur enjoying increasing fame as his business took off. She was just a humble collection of runners heading to a workout. She ran into him on Masonic, and he was inside of her within seconds. It was electric, full of heavy breaths and beating hearts. When they finished, she took a picture and posted it on her wall, hoping to savor the memory. Every week, she would write him letters asking him to see her again, a request he was happy to fulfill. But then a darker side of him began to creep out. He wouldn’t return her calls. He told her he’d be there for her, only to leave her waiting for him on the street corner. She desperately wants him back, hoping to rekindle their hot and sweaty relationship.
David Miller, if you break another #verbal for #rungang, we’re going to assume you’re up to some really kinky shit. #wemissyou
Warden McCloskey runs a tight ship. Every Friday she has her crew of 50-60 captives run hills repeatedly for 30 minutes. She takes them to different hill each week and tells them that it builds endurance. Elrebo Oberlesuspects the Warden has ulterior motives. He thinks she moves them around in search of a great treasure hidden in San Francisco. What treasure is hidden in tomorrow’s workout? Join #rungang to find out!
THE RAGNAR GAMES
It was a competition for the ages. The humble tribute from Team 290 had honed her craft in the Oakland Hills, ready to unleash mayhem on the other teams. While her husband protected the camp with pushup after pushup,Amyss slayed the competition with speed and precision. Not even the Capitol’s Highway Patrol could slow her down. As her team came upon the end of the course, they valiantly broke through the finish line and helped their allies from Team 425, Team 311, Team 313, and Team 312 escape to safety. What does the next installation of this series have in store for NPSF? Join #rungang for #stormthefort and find out!
In a fictional universe inside my head…
Josh Zipin: Hey Hutch, any word from Pádraig on what tomorrow’s workout is going to be?
Andrew Hutchinson: It’s PR Wednesday.
Josh: Oh man, I’m still super tired from Ragnar. Is there any way I can get out of it?
Hutch: You can get out of a workout by demonstrating exceptional dedication.
Josh: And how does one demonstrate exceptional dedication?
Hutch: By actually doing the workout.
The leaders of the California tribes looked upon their creation in amazement. Part NPSF, part NPLAX, he’s electrified by steep hills and views of the coastline. You can find him lurking in the darkness before the sun comes up. What other beasts will come out tomorrow morning to crush the Dolores Park workout? Drop a #verbal for #rungang to find out!
LITTLE HOUSE ON THE RUNGANG
We’re always on the move, searching for a better place to settle down and work out. We were displaced from our original homeland, but the wide open spaces at Fort Mason satisfy our needs. Join the #rungang family for#stormthefort tomorrow. I’m pretty sure we won’t get dysentery.
THE DEANGELIS CODE
Brace yourselves for an epic journey around the world. Who is Kate DeAngelis, and what is she trying to tell us? Her Renaissance (#regulargang) works are known to many, but her earlier works from the Middle Ages (#tweeners) and even before (#earlygang) hold some shocking surprises. In his New York Times bestseller, Daniel Claytoninvestigates the patterns in DeAngelis’ workouts and reveals what a badass she really is. Can the specifics of a forthcoming workout be predicted based on patterns found in previous workouts? DeAngelis has it figured out, but the truth will leave you sweating on top of the steps at Alta Plaza. Join#rungang for a sneak peek of this riveting story!
BOOK OF HILLS
Last May, when I was getting ready to leave for my trip to Europe, I grabbed coffee with Pádraig Ó Laoghaire to get suggestions for what to see in Ireland. He said, “Oh man, you’ve gotta go to Trinity College and see the Book of Hills.” I wrote it down on my list and headed back to lab.
Once I got to Trinity College, I saw a bunch of signs for the Book of Kells. The Irish must really like to spell their words funny, I guess. I hopped in line with a bunch of old people and managed to convince the desk guy I was eligible for the student discount. There were signs all over the place saying “no pictures,” but that makes sense because the book is like a thousand years old. Then I came across a little door that said “Exclusive Collections: Authorised Irish People Only” and couldn’t help but sneak in. I asked them how they were getting on, said I was Mairk from Cork, and told them I’d only be a minute because I left my vehicle running in the car park.
Suddenly everything made sense. The Irish have a secret book that gives them ancient tips for running hills like beasts. All those times Paddy and Aoife get “lost” running trails? They’re drawing out Celtic knots with their Strava routes. Paddy tells us he’s visiting family right now. He’s actually going to read the section on running 50-miler races because he never thought he’d need it before moving to the states and joining NP. Tomorrow NP is running hills at the Sutro Ruins. Will there be any ancient American wisdom hiding there? Join #rungang to find out!
DR. SUESS’S TINGS
In honor of Better than Bedtime, here’s a little bedtime story for you all.
One does a sit-up
One does a push-up
Don’t run too fast
Cuz’ then you’ll throw up
This one smells a little herbal
That one has a baby gerbil
Maybe both will drop a #verbal