April 26, 2010

Falling In Step

Tonight was one of those nights were I could have easily made an excuse to not run. Legs were tired, busy day, dog needs attention… ugh – do I really want to lace up and run? There are a few motivational thoughts that go through my head if I am teetering back and forth – and they usually are enough to kick my ass out the door. The first is the physical benefit… yes, I want legs like Fergie, yes I want to feel fit, yes – I want to be in amazing shape. The second is, what else are you going to do? Watch tv? Nap? Lame. Don’t be lame Beth. Lastly, I think of all the ways I am keeping track of my running – this blog, my excel spreadsheet that graphs my runs compared to training programs and a far-reaching goal my sister set for herself that I am trying to keep up with (320 miles in 23 weeks). I have such pride when I open up the excel spreadsheet and put my number from the day before in… the overall total goes up, the distance remaining goes down. It’s a small satisfaction, but it’s a big part of my motivation. Besides, I’d be lame if I had a running blog and didn’t run!
My run was in 2 parts today – the first with my dog who makes frequent piss stops but does speed up when he spots a cat in the distance. The distance was 2.8 miles and it was a great warm up. The weather was overcast, cooler (high 50′s?) and windy. The second part was solo with a distance of 3.55 miles (days total 6.35). There was a moment between dropping Dogan (the dog) off at the house and before going for my run that all those excuses could have come into play. And if I didn’t have such far-reaching goals myself, those excuses probably would have won out. In a marathon coaching book that I read, one thing stuck out in particular and that is that there can’t be any excuses. Regardless of the conditions, state of mind, physical being – anything – it simply does not matter. So what? It’s raining… can I not run in the rain? My legs are sore – but don’t I like that feeling of a good workout? I’m tired – so what?
And the 2nd run was great. I got into that state where my legs found a rhythm, my breathing fell into a steady pattern – my body was functioning perfectly and at that moment, my mind is left to wander at it’s content. The thoughts that go through my head are as sporadic as they are weird. “It’s time to take this necklace off”, “Remember to write her back”, “That house is funky”, “Where the hell is that chocolate chip cookie scent coming from?!”. It’s a beautiful state of mind and partially why I think people get addicted to running – it helps clear all those thoughts.
After my run, I did some wall-sits to help strengthen my quads, drank water, enjoyed dinner and am now about to pass out to do it all over again. I feel great :)

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