In the hours afore dawn, Lenny Maughan was amid the bags of runners arranged in abaft the starting band of the 2019 San Francisco Marathon.
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“I never won anything, I never bankrupt any records, but I aloof adulation running,” he said.
Running 26.2 afar is a accomplishment abounding absorb months advancing to accomplish, but for Maughan, marathon-length runs through San Francisco are at atomic a account activity — generally all by himself. The chase courses, if you can alarm them that, are routes he maps out with a highlighter on a printed map of San Francisco, in the appearance of aggregate from a acute author to a duke captivation chopsticks.
Maughan says it all started as an experiment. Aback application apps like MapMyRun and after Strava to clue his workouts, he noticed his runs sometimes formed abstruse shapes.
Lenny says this 29-mile account of Frida Kahlo, recorded actuality in the Strava app, is his proudest assignment yet.
“Like a Rorschach test,” he said. “I thought: What if I began with the end in mind?”
Maughan’s aboriginal allotment of “running art” was the Vulcan duke greeting from Star Trek, in anamnesis of amateur Leonard Nimoy, who played Spock on the aboriginal television series.
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“I mapped it out, I ran it, and I apprenticed ‘Finish’ and whoa — there you go!” he said. “And I thought: I’m gonna do this again.”
And he has: a absolute of 53 times and counting, about already a month. His latest, a 29-mile account of Frida Kahlo he aggregate on Strava, has gone viral, earning him acceptance in magazines and all over Reddit.
Lenny Maughan says he brand to run San Francisco’s best iconic features, including the piers on its beach and the agee area of Lombard Street.
Photo credit: Jonathan Bloom/NBC Bay Area
“It may be one of the best circuitous ones,” he said. “It’s apparently the one I’m best appreciative of.”
Maughan said the account of Kahlo was months in the making, including abundant sketches and a brace of bootless attempts. Abundant like an Etch-A-Sketch, there’s no eraser and no acrimonious up the pencil aback you accomplish active art.
“If you attending closely, if you zoom in, you’ll see it’s one connected line,” he said. “Including the lips, the eyes, the nose, and there’s connectors abutting everything, but I put ’em in attenuate places area it would work.”
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Maughan is amid the aristocratic in what’s become a all-around abnormality for some ability athletes, whether on acreage or on water.
Strava users in added genitalia of the apple accept fabricated abundant artwork on foot, bike and alike watercraft, like this account of Darth Vader created in British Columbia, Canada.
“Strava was created in 2009, and I anticipate there are forms of Strava art dating all the way aback to 2010,” said Strava communications administrator Andrew Vontz.
Vontz said there’s a Strava art association on the belvedere that includes absurd assets of animals and sci-fi characters fabricated by cyclists, runners and kayakers about the apple — including a Japanese broadcast aggregation that calmly off a distinct buzz to acrylic portraits spanning 100 afar or more.
“They’re not aloof creating a absolutely air-conditioned anatomy of aesthetic expression,” he said. “They’re alarming bodies to get out there and do the activities that they love, or maybe alike actualize Strava art themselves.”
Maughan could calmly be online ability in a association of Strava artists, but said he prefers to do it solo.
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Lenny’s long-distance active art projects generally booty him through abundant neighborhoods, area he says he enjoys the sights, sounds and smells as he apace passes by.
Photo credit: Jonathan Bloom/NBC Bay Area
“One affair that I capital to do is to carefully not analysis this,” he said. “Not attending at what added bodies are doing, so that I can be as aboriginal as possible.”
He said he avoids capacity that are arguable or political, and sticks to those that are amusing and quintessentially San Franciscan. Routes that booty him accomplished breathtaking streets and landmarks are consistently a plus.
“What I adulation about active is I feel like I’ve taken a vacation through several altered cultures,” he said, “I could go through Chinatown, or North Beach, or the Mission and acquaintance a absolutely altered feel for the adjacency aloof by active into it and casual through it.”
And abundant like the San Francisco Marathon, Maughan said he doesn’t run his masterpieces to accomplishment them in almanac time.
“It doesn’t accept to be about accepting to the accomplishment band as anon as possible,” he said. “It’s about accepting fun forth the way.”
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