There it is. I've never seen Rocky. I feel as if I know the movie -- I mean, it's got a huge cultural resonance. And since I run a ton of races, I have heard both "Gonna Fly Now" and "Eye of the Tiger" way more than your average person. Way more.
And, of course, one of the classic moments in Rocky is the training montage. I must admit that sometimes when I run, in my mind, it becomes a training montage. (Really? Not when you run? Oh.)
I don't know anything about Philadelphia -- other than that there's an amazing medical history museum there (the Mutter Museum) -- so I had never thought about how far Rocky runs during his various training montages. Of course, someone has.
Dan McQuade, writing in PhillyMag.com details the long, kid-mobbed montage in Rocky II, where Rocky Balboa runs through Philadelphia.
What’s always amused me about this scene is how absolutely little sense Rocky’s route makes: South Philly becomes North Philly becomes the Italian Market becomes North Philly again, and so on. Obviously, the montage isn’t meant to be taken seriously as an actual workout; it’s just a few scenes strung together so “Gonna Fly Now” can play and Rocky can finish at the top of the Art Museum steps.
But, I wondered, what if this roadwork were treated as one actual run? How far would Rocky go? Well, I decided to find out. I pieced together the routes Rocky could have traveled from scene to scene in this training montage and calculated distance.
Dan measured it all out and, apparently, if Rocky ran it as one stretch, it would be 30.61 miles long. Don't forget that Rocky sprints the last half mile or so flat out,… I guess so that he can run up those stairs at the Philadelphia Museum of Art on his own again…
Read the very funny piece on PhillyMag.com… and remember to try and finish every run with a triumphant run up some stairs so that you can throw some punches and then jump up and down with your fists in the air.