Wow. Just two lines into my post and I've done a trifecta geek-out of using Latin, referencing Descartes' famous quote "Cogito Ergo Sum" (I think therefore I am), and then changing the quote to fit my own needs. With my apologies and thanks to Mr. Descartes, I can begin this post.
|Philadelphia Rock N' Roll Half Marathon 2012: 1:57:15 (new PR!)|
Running has been a constant in my life. Through translating Latin in college, law school, my first years as an attorney, a trial where I lived in a hotel two hours from home for six months, two children, several houses, running has been there for me. And as I go through this current major change in my life, it is here for me now. Running is not something that I do -- running is who I am. Running reminds me that I am strong, that I am safe and that I am going to be OK. Running is a tangible reminder that I can do anything, and it will all be OK. Even after a horrible run where nothing goes right, there is always tomorrow: a new chance for a new day, a new run.
This year has been a tough one, to say the least. Three things have been instrumental in my not losing it: (1) my children; (2) the love and support of my friends and family; and (3) running. Running has, quite literally, saved my life. I started doing triathlons this year too - it started with a sprint triathlon in May (350 meter swim, 13 mile bike, 3.1 mile run). I loved it so much, I did another. And then I pushed myself to train all summer for an Olympic-distance triathlon in September (1/2 mile swim, 40 mile bike, 6.2 mile run). I registered for, and completed, more races and triathlons this year to count. I think some of my friends think I may have lost my mind a little, but frankly, I cannot agree. Races, unlike just heading out for a casual run or swim or bike ride, give a rush that is simply unequaled. To be around other athletes of all abilities and know that we are all doing the same thing with totally different goals ... it's inspiring. I can feed off of that positive, euphoric energy for days. It is infectious -- even after a race where I do not perform as I hoped, I am always happy and feel accomplished when I cross that finish line.
All of the above is my love letter to running. There are moments when I hate it -- like when I am about 7 miles into a 16 mile run and I am tired. Or when the air is humid and I can't breathe right, which affects everything and not in a good way. Or when it is blazing hot or pouring rain or dark and the last thing I want to do is run ... I still run. And I still love it.
I am running the Philly marathon on Sunday. I have a time goal (of course I do!) of running it under 4 hours. But the true goal of the race for me is to have fun, stay in it mile-by-mile and let my body lead the way. I will be sure to post a recap of the race next week. One thing that I am doing is dedicating certain miles of the run to particular people in my life. I am hopeful that doing so will give me the push in those rough miles at the end, because by personalizing the fight, I might be more inspired to keep going and keep running and stay strong.
Along those lines, there was a moment recently when I was running strong - my body and breathing were totally in sync and I was really moving fast. It was a gorgeous Fall morning: not too warm, not too cool, not too dark. I thought to myself, "thank you legs and thank you lungs. You are so strong. Heart, you will follow." It will - maybe not today or tomorrow, but it will. And in the meantime, I will keep on running.
See you swoon,