Recently, I have noticed an uptake in the amount of runners that I see along the side of the road while I’m driving the kids to various activities (or myself to the Starbuck’s drive thru). I must admit, I was starting to feel like I was missing out, so I signed up for a half marathon and joined a local running group called Liquid Awesome.
I really do not know what possessed me to do this. Maybe it was because I wanted to lose weight, or maybe it was because I wanted to get in shape. Maybe I just wanted to fit in, but I did it, and now I am in it to the end. Training started over a month ago, and until this week, I have been religious about sticking to the schedule. I only have one day a week when I don’t run or cross train and therefore my social life has dwindled.
Working out after being up late is not very enjoyable (especially if you have had wine during those late hours).
Despite being MIA within my social group, I have to admit, training is fun. I really do love working out, and after that first mile, running is not so bad. The music I listen to is key. If it wasn’t for the music then I would not make it through. Some folks run without music, and good on them, but I could not do it. I’ve tried it, but that was only when I had a friend talking to me the whole time. I couldn’t talk back because I could hardly breath, but listening to her helped the time pass.
Once I started running on my own, I sat down and made a playlist of music that I change up every other week or so. Foo Fighters, Pearl Jam, and top 40 pop hits tend to work the best for me.
Another thing about running – it can be expensive! A lot of the women I run with have fancy watches that count their miles and map their routes, belts that hold little bottles of water, arm bands that hold their phones or music players and running clothes that are well coordinated. I show up to our weekly group runs in old tank tops, regular workout capris (no shorts for me yet!), and hold my phone the whole way. I don’t know if they make a belt in my size, and I just follow the people in front of me so I don’t get lost during our runs.
Until I become a more savvy runner, I will save my money.
Speaking of running junkies, you know that runners high everyone seems to mention? The one you get when the run is going great and you love it and you can run forever? I haven’t gotten that yet. My high comes after I have finished because I am alive and done for the day. I never really “look forward” to a run, except for the fact that it is my way of getting “me” time. I would prefer a mani/pedi, but I will take what I can get.
One thing is for sure: I never regret having dragged myself to the gym or out of bed early in the morning to go run.
This past week, I came down with a summer cold. Let me tell you, these are the worst. Colds in the winter are sucky, but in the summer, with hot humid weather they are torture. Because of this cold, I have missed training this week, and am hoping it won’t be hard to get back into it. Despite my own shortcomings within this sport (being slow, walking more than usual during a six-mile run, and getting sick), I do enjoy the time alone on the road, the time with friends after group runs, and the support these women are giving each other to succeed.
Who knows, maybe one day you’ll see me running down Gold Hill Road in a pair of cool shorts, a matching top, an arm band holding my phone, and a cute water belt. Until then, I will do my best not to pass out, or injure myself as I train for the Rock and Roll half marathon in November.
Beth writes about being a Fort Mill transplant in between diaper changes and snack requests. She lives with her husband and four small children. Read more of her writing at www.thellamasdrama.blogspot.com