Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Stu Sherman: Making Lemonade out of Lemons

What makes a "champion?" Exceptional physical performance? Mental toughness? Or does it have something to do with a lack of self-pity and deciding to view experiences as positive, especially when they don't go as planned?

Enter Stu Sherman. Despite suffering a terrible fall and breaking his leg while running on pace for a top ten finish in this year's Santa Barbera 9 Trails 35 Mile Endurance Run on November 26, 2005, he decided to make lemonade out of lemons.

From Luis Escobar's website:

"Over the years, Stu has finished the Santa Barbera 9 Trails 35 Mile Endurance several times. Like all of us Stu has encountered good days and not so good days. But like a true ultra distance runner Stu is never discouraged, always optimistic, ready for the next adventure, ready to take responsbility for this own actions and decisions. This year Stu was positioned for a top ten finish when disaster struck him down. On Saturday during the race, Stu fell off the Cold Springs Trail, he cut his knee open and broke his leg! Stu did not look to place blame, Stu did not cry about the race he was about to lose. Like a true distance athlete (with the help of his fellow competitors who unselfishly gave their race time) Stu scrambled back on to the trail, bloody and in pain he limped back up the Cold Springs Trail to the Gibraltar Aid Station. From there he was transported to the hospital where after a couple of hours he was treated. After the hospital Stu found his way back to the Cater Start/Finish area. He did not come back to complain about the hazardous trail or the trail markings. He came back to turn in his bib number and DNF as requested.
He came back to encourage his fellow runners. He came back to support the race. They say that "competing does not build character, it reveals it." (my emphasis) On Saturday, Stu Sherman was revealed for what he really is. Stu Sherman is a genuine ultra distance athlete. Stu represents what it means to be an ultra runner. We can all learn a lesson from Stu Sherman."

To see Stu's comments to his coach, Lisa Smith, go to Luis Escobar's website:

For full race results, go to:

Know someone who makes lemonade out of lemons? Send your story to Phil Essam at

Constance Karras :)

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