I decided last May that I was going to learn to run and believe me, I use the term run very loosely. When I run, I look like a defensive lineman that suddenly finds himself holding the ball and needs to run down the field for a touchdown, it is not pretty. I have done the research (of course I have) and intellectually know all about Good Form Running, Chi Running, and 180 footfalls per minute running. I know how to do it, I just suck at it.
Some days I go out and it is like I am running through jello. I can't breathe, my heart rate goes through the roof, and my body feels like I weigh 300 pounds. Other days, I am stronger and every once in a while I can catch a rhythm. All in all, I am really slow and it is embarrassing how long it takes me to pass a walker. Inevitably, I have to speed up so much, to not look like a dork, that once I pass the walker, I can no longer breathe and end up walking a few steps just so I don't pass out....
I went out today, to my favorite spot. I run 4 miles or shall I say I jog, walk, run 4 miles. It was a beautiful day and I hit the trail. I am always quite optimistic when I start, the first mile will usually determine if its going to be a good one or a jello one. It was a decent one. As I was finishing the last half mile, I knew I wasn't going to beat my record but I had a shot at a respectable time and I started thinking about all I had learned about myself and about life through running. In no particular order, these are some:
- You can not cry and run at the same time. I learned that the day my Grandma died.
- You can intellectually know how to do something but still not do it well.
- Progress is slow.
- Some days everything is going for you and your performance sucks.
- Other days, you head out hurting and in a rotten mood and beat your best time.
- You can go farther and work harder than you think you can.
- You can take way more pain than you ever thought possible.
- Cute running outfits don't improve performance but new shoes do.
- Always go to the bathroom before you get out on the trail.
- It is easier running in cool weather but the trail is prettier when it is hot and muggy.
- It doesn't matter how hard you are breathing, everybody has in headphones.
- If one part of the trail is flooded, there is a good chance that so are others - turn around!
- God hangs out on the jogging trail, he'll run beside you if you let Him.