The odd thing was that I actually found myself itching to run during the week while I was battling to not cough up a lung, and using more tissues than a bunch of seventh grade girls trying to make themselves look like high schoolers.
I know the whole running thing is getting serious when I actually look forward to doing it.
The temperature was nearing 30 when I put on my running toga, laced up my sneakers, and set out from The House on the Hill with some Guns ‘N’ Roses blasting in my ears.
Even though I hadn’t run in almost two weeks, I set a lofty goal for myself: today would be my first attempt at 4 miles. On my last run 13 days ago, I’d gone 3.5 miles, so this was going to be a test. My lungs were still not clear, and my nose was still stunning me with the amount of snot it could hold.
Every runner needs a goal, and today, mine was to conquer 4 miles.
I set a slow, steady pace because the last thing I wanted was to get to the 1.5 mile mark, feel tired, and decide to make it a 3 mile run. When I’m this early in my running program, it’s never about time. It’s all about getting miles under my belt (yes, my running toga has a belt to avoid “blow ups” out on the road and distracting oncoming drivers) and the confidence that I can handle a distance.
Once I know I can complete a certain route, I then work on whittling down my time. Even then, however, I’m always looking to run further, so I try not to give too much Deep Thought to running faster. I just want to run until my body needs to stop.
I didn’t even check my watch when I got to the 2 mile mark. All I cared about was that I felt good and was confident that I had another 2 miles in me.
It was at about the 2.25 mile mark that my nose start to run. You don’t have to be a runner to understand how important it is to be able to breathe out of your nose. Then my legs started to feel heavy. Clearly, I was being tested, and I really needed to focus to get back to The House on the Hill without stopping. So I cranked up the music, let my thoughts drift off to a happy place, and ignored my annoying nose and aching legs.
Luckily, most of the last 1.5 miles is downhill. Momentum and sheer determination were the key factors in getting me to my front porch without having to stop and walk. I was very pumped about that.
I completed my first 4 mile run of 2014 in 42:09. I felt really good, and my runner’s high inspired me to serenade my neighbors with a little Pearl Jam during my cool down. The photo on the left is of me moments after the run, and right before I busted out my Eddie Vedder imitation.
I’m a bit sore now, but it’s that good kind of sore. I’d like to get right back out there tomorrow and take another crack at 4 miles.
Hopefully, this will do something to counteract the damage done by those Girl Scout Cookies that somehow found their way into The House on the Hill this week.
All I know is that I’m 4 miles closer to Spring, Modern Philosophers, and that’s more than enough to get me through the rest of my Saturday.
Hope you’re finding a way to do something healthy today, too!