Many, many... MANY years ago (OK, maybe just six.) I was a runner. I replaced my running shoes every 300 miles, I ran various 5 and 10K races, I read Runner's World cover-to-cover (and took notes), and I even tracked my mileage in an Excel spreadsheet. People, I ran 1,882 miles in a five-year time span.
Not only did I run to get into and stay in some sort of decent physical shape, I ran to calm my inner freak show. My favorite t-shirt from way back in those running days of yore expressed the title of this blog post. I wore it quite often. I was proud of the fact that my Adidas Supernovae played therapist while the pavement took my anger, angst, and sadness with nary a whimper or protest. I would use that 30 minutes/3 miles each morning to think through problems, go over to do lists, or just empty my mind. I remember one morning, in particular, after I had failed yet another pregnancy test, when I broke down. I started sobbing and quite literally fell down to the ground and railed at the concrete sidewalk over my hate for God, my ovaries, pink/blue bows on mailboxes, and Pampers commercials. When I had finished my pity party, I got up and ran. Hard.
And then, I stopped. I stopped because even though I eventually found myself pregnant with my hard-won, fertility-drugged twins, I wanted to stay in shape. Six weeks into my first pregnancy, I speed-walked my favorite 3-mile route and discovered I was bleeding. Needless to say, I gave it up. Have you ever tried to run three miles, with hills, while pushing 20 pounds of twins encased in a 30-something pound double jogging stroller? No? Well, I have and I can tell you that's not therapy, that's torture. So, I gave up.
Once the kids started school this year, I dusted off my running shoes, sniffed the armpits of my old Nike running shirts, and purchased my very own copy of Couch to 5k. After seven weeks of the C25K nine-week program, I can proudly tell you that yesterday morning I ran three miles at a 10-minutes-per-mile pace. For the first time in over six years.
I'm back, dear pavement. I'm back. I hope you're ready for some long, drawn-out therapy sessions because HOO-DOGGIES do I have some issues to work through!
Yeah, that picture up there is me with fellow marathoner George Takei. He also played some guy on some sci-fi show back in the 60s. Oh, and Ty-man is in the picture, too.