I have a secret to share with you all. And it’s probably going to cause a lot of eye-rolling, maybe some much needed slaps to the head and definitely cause most of you to shake your heads. So here goes.
I’ve been running.
I know. I talked a lot of big talk. I said things like, “oh I’m going to do nothing but eat cookies, drink wine and rest and heal for 2 weeks” And, “it’s not good to run that soon after the marathon.” And I read books on recovery, consulted with Alberto and knew I shouldn’t run. But I did it anyway.
In my defense, for 7 (ok 6) days I really did do nothing. I drank wine, I ate things I normally don’t touch, stayed up late and sat on my couch. But Saturday morning I could not take it anymore. I needed to move my body. I felt gross, lethargic and squishy. And bored. And a little twitchy from not moving my body. Turns out I’m not so good at the whole “being lazy” thing. I thought I’d bust out my road bike (that is collecting dust) but it was raining and getting out my gear, pumping up my tires, driving to the trail… it all sounded so laborious and un-fun. So… I put on my running shoes and ran 5 miles.
It felt amazing. Running without the tyranny of my watch, weekly mileage goals or even a defined route was so much fun. I can tell I’m not fully recovered (a couple of little aches but nothing serious) but something about having my dirty running shoes back on my porch just felt so right. They don’t belong in my closet! They belong on my feet!
I was good– I didn’t run Sunday but I did run yesterday and today. Both times just 5 miles and both times at what seemed like an easy pace. And I won’t run tomorrow– I’m not ready to run 3 days in a row. But it did remind me that I actually do love running for its own sake and not just to race.
Don’t get me wrong– I love to race and train hard (I think I like training even more than racing) but 19 weeks of really hard training took their toll on me both mentally and physically. I got so wrapped up in the stats, numbers and goals that sometimes I think I forgot to just run.
There are times that I look at my life and think, “whoa. How did I get to be an adult?” I have a mortgage, I wear suits and high heels and own professional-looking handbags, I can taste the difference between a good and bad bottle of wine, I get up at 5:30 without complaining, I have an accountant, many of my friends have kids… I think you get the idea. Don’t get me wrong– I am so, so, so blessed and wouldn’t change a thing but I still feel like a kid most of the time. Running gets me there. When I’m in my running clothes I not only look like a 12 year old, I feel like a 12 year old. And I love that– I think the girl in the head to toe pink Nike outfit is much closer to the “real” me than the “adult” in a black JCrew suit furiously blackberrying and sitting in ligitation meetings. Or maybe it’s both.
All I know is that I’m grateful to get to be both– the girl in the pink running shoes and the girl in the black heels. But if I start going to meetings in running shoes or running in heels… I’ll know I need to pick one!