When last we spoke, I was about to run a half marathon of my own devising and, then, hightail it to the airport to head to Orlando to sort out some Mom-related stuff. Which is sort of what I did.
My only deviation from the plan was that my half wasn't a full 13.1. Lightening started to hop across distant (but not distant enough) clouds around mile 12 and I pulled the plug. All told, it was a less than spectacular run through air so humid you could chew it on a morning I was just so tired my very marrow wanted to take a nap already. Still, I did what I could. Even a lousy run is better than no run.
That’s what I’ve heard, anyway. I have some doubts.
The flights to Orlando passed as flights do, which is to say: cramped and bumpy, which is the best one can anticipate. The Southwest flight attendant reminded us to “be kind to each other out there” when we landed in Orlando. Given how the past few weeks on both a global and personal level have gone, I nearly draped myself over said flight attendant’s shoulder and wept. I suspect such an act would earn me a visit by Homeland Security and a cavity search. I refrained this time because my ride was waiting.
I spent the next few days Not Running. Other life events took priority. They involved a lot more driving than I’d anticipated. And so it goes.
I did manage to work in a brief two miles on a hotel treadmill because I needed to burn off some “arg,” some “sigh,” and a little bit of “really?” The only downside is that said treadmill faced an entire wall of mirrors so that I could watch the waves of impact move from my feet, up the loose skin on my thighs and belly, and back down again. My horror at the ravages of age and motherhood quickly turned to amusement. I can only take my vanity seriously for so long, y’all. And as I worked up a righteous sweat, drops of which I could see bouncing off of the ends of my hair, I once again realized that a body that works is much better than one that doesn’t.
I did toy with the idea of getting away from the mirrors and running outside — I was near a famous running trail and the National Training Center — but I burst into flames at the very idea. I doff my Saucony Freedom cap to Floridian BAMRs. How do you run on the surface of the sun? As a cousin of mine suggested: is it the humidity that keeps you from bursting into flames?
I’ll get out on those trails next time. There will likely be many “next times,” too. While the situation down south is no longer a crisis (twss), it will still require my presence as often as I can make it happen. This whole sandwich generation thing is for the birds — and the particular bird I’m thinking of involves one of the fingers on my hand.
It is, however, teaching me to focus on what’s working well right now. Even though my to-do lists are spawning their own baby to-do lists, I’m back home again and officially training for a small race in New York City in November. Nine miles on Sunday led to five Tuesday morning and six today, which I may or may not have run by the time you read this.
Right now, the running is going well. It’s not fast, even by my own definition of fast, nor is it especially graceful. Yet I am thankful for it, if only because it’s time when I don’t feel compelled to do anything other than run. I’m certain my attitude will change once the mileage starts to pile up — there’s 12 on the plan for Saturday and 14 (!) for the following Sunday — but for now I’m going to wallow in this moment of gratitude.
Speaking of mileage piling up, my podcast list is getting kind of thin. I’m addicted to NPR Politics right now (yes, I’m that kind of geek) and always love Pop Culture Happy Hour. And, of course, the AMR podcast, unless I am the co-host that week, because I know what we all said already. I'd like to add more to the list, though, to get me through the long runs to come. What are your favorite podcasts?
(A note: I always, always, always read the comments, even if I don’t always, always, always have the mental capacity to respond. This community is amazingly supportive and full of great ideas. Mostly. There are a couple of you I’m keeping an eye on… ;))