We've been watching a bit of Netflix recently, and we took in two sports-related movies. The first was The Flying Scotsman, about Graeme Obree, a Scottish guy who custom built a bike and ended up setting the world record in velodrome bike racing (the kind where you go around and around and around a track). I think we both really liked this movie because Alex is a cyclist, so we could really identify with the training schedule, the bike rides in the rain, the pieces of the bikes falling off, and the pain of building a bike to fit you and make you go fast. It was a "feel good" movie, about a guy chasing a dream, and mostly attaining it. However, there were some dark spots. Apparently Obree has battled depression (and ended up coming out of the closet recently), so he was not always happy in his achievements. The movie also shows just how ridiculous the sport of cycling is, with the stupid rules the UCI comes up with to make cyclists conform to their standards. I thought it was a well done movie, and I really enjoyed it.
The other movie we took in was The Spirit of the Marathon, a documentary movie that followed several runners (including the elite runner Deena Kastor) in the months and weeks leading up to the Chicago Marathon (in 2005 methinks). The movie was really interesting, showing how families and individuals coped with the rigorous training, how emotional the runs can be, and how cool the support from running groups is. It really made me want to go for a run, and I'm itching to head to Stanford to get involved in the running community there. I have no doubt it will be a million times better than here, since there are way more trails and interesting places to go. I was also really glad that it showcased the running of an elite woman (women tend to get so little attention in any sport). Kastor is an inspiration, and a wonderful role model for women of all levels of sport. Her dogged determination, her stubbornness, and her great attitude just shone through this movie through and through. There were also several other women featured in the movie, so it was a great Rah! Rah! women! all around :) I think these were two movies that were inspirational, they really were a great time to watch them, and they really made me want to hit the pavement!