My training for my upcoming half has been inconsistent. Once my first two weeks were interrupted by bronchitis, I never gained traction. I've more or less let go of my goal to break two hours...I'm slightly disappointed, but I also know that I want to be a runner for the rest of my life. There will be plenty of possibilities to PR. Sometimes you have to just accept it's not your day, and for a runner, it's important to reconcile yourself with that reality.
Despite my newly adopted easy-going mentality for this half, I have struggled occasionally with just getting out the door. My energy is often low, I struggle with finding the time to get a run in amidst my social life, work and home responsibilities, and some days I just can't find the motivation to get out the door.
Yesterday was one of those days. Relying on a standard quick-fix, I decided to run somewhere out of the ordinary for novelty's sake. I hopped in my car and headed to a local lake, where I could run laps, zone out, and simply get the miles logged.
Often when I run I think about running. It can be a very meta-experience in that sense. This run-- which I had to battle myself simply to start-- made me think very much about why it is that I run.
On the same property as the lake I was looping sits a school for children and young adults with disabilities. Every time I passed it I drew strength from my proximity to what I imagine is a wonderful place. Knowing an unmotivated three mile run pales in comparison to the challenges the students attending that school face everyday put the whole run in perspective. And then, to add to this recognition, I noticed my company at the lake included a number of people who can't run. A woman pushed her adult son in a wheelchair. A man with a prosthetic leg was walking around the lake for as long as I was running-- and he continued even after I had stopped.
While I sat lakeside and stretched afterwards, I thought of a running quote that has always motivated me: "I run because I can. When I get tired, I remember those who can't run, what they would give to have this simple gift I take for granted, and I run harder for them. I know they would do the same for me."
I'm thankful that I can run, and for the reminders that I shouldn't ever take that for granted.