The Race is Long

Lived and Learned

I just got in. I’m stinky, I’m dripping with sweat, and I’m positively glowing with satisfaction, I’m practically radioactive! You would think I finished a marathon or something, the way I’m gushing. Nope. It’s just a 10k. I didn’t even race. It’s just a good old, plain Sunday 10k.

It’s just that it seems like ages since I’ve done one; and today’s was just right. It was regular. Ordinary. Just what I wanted. No drama, no fuss.

I learned my lesson from last week’s disaster. A lesson, it seems, a runner is bound to learn time and again—I’m pretty sure I’ve done something like that before. So, I set out early this time around. The distances I’m doing are still short enough that I can still get away starting out with the sun already out, but in a couple of week’s time, with the pace I keep, I know I will have to start waking up earlier to be out on the road before sunup.

I can’t help but love this sport. There’s always something new to learn or re-learn. I run in loops to make up my distances. I was wondering why I was having trouble with a couple of loops that totaled 5k. Then I remembered that, I’ve been doing a lot of my running indoors, on a treadmill. Now, that I got the go signal to run outdoors, I’ll limit the treadmill use to stormy days.

On the one hand, I’m thrilled at the small things. The itty-bitty progress. I feel gratified by effort and even by the small results—which I’m sure are there, if not for anything else, the endorphin kick is worth it. On the other, I’m daunted by the work that’s still ahead. I feel so chicken shit these days. I never used to be afraid of hard work. I used to relish the thought of the challenge. I wonder if something in me has changed. If I’ve lost something essential. We’ll find out I guess.


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