Tag Archive | Running Friends

Epic Day

Tonight I should be sore from running my Birthday Half Marathon AKA the Rutgers NJ Half.    Like millions of people across the world,  plans change.   Honestly with all that has been happening my birthday actually snuck up on me and I was ho hum about it.    I know that had the world not stopped, I would have been ready for this half.   I  am allowed to be disappointed, but with that can realize…

It just doesn’t matter.

To be honest this half marathon was not so much about finishing the race, but knowing I was going to spend it with friends.   I had encouraged a few people to sign up and before we knew it, there was a group of planning to go.   Some I haven’t even run with yet, but was looking forward to running with.   It would have been an epic day as a day spent with friends always is.

It was still an epic day.

I woke up.    I have my health.   My family has their health.   We have food in the fridge.   A roof over our heads and hubby continues to work from home.   Life is good.   We are blessed.   We are lucky.   We are grateful.

So while origionally I toyed with actually running a half marathon today, I thought better of it.   I took a day off from any and all exercise.   I showered.   More shocking is that I even blew dried my hair, put on makeup, and found that I can still squeeze into my jeans.   I was being fancy today.   It almost felt like formal attire.

I took an iced coffee and was waiting in my side garden for a friend who said she was coming to pick something up.   I was soaking up the sun.   I was enjoying the silence.   Then the horns started beeping.    The shouts of Happy Birthday from cars.   I looked up to see my own birthday caravan with balloons, posters, Happy Birthday banners, even a real live unicorn, and most of all wonderful friends.

No it was not the birthday I imagined or planned for.   Yes, I wish that the world was in a good place for it to return to normal.    But most of all, I realized how lucky I am.   After they drove away, I realized that if it weren’t for running this caravan would not have happened.    These women for the most part came into my life when I started lacing up my running shoes.   We’ve ran many miles in training together.  We’ve ran many miles just to be together.   We’ve chased 9 plus 1 together.   We’ve ran trails together.   Some of us even have run away from Klingon Opera singing together (I kid you not).   We’ve grown together.   We’ve been there to cheer each other on and pick each other up not just with running but in life too.

Running has brought me so much in life but by far the best thing it has given to me is the people in has brought into my life.

So while running is a “solitary” sport and everyone who runs must run their own race and pace, that does not mean that you have to do it alone.

While we all tuck ourselves away at home, it sometimes feels like you might be in it alone, that your own your own, but it’s not true.   Just like each of us runs our own race and meet at the finish line, we will shelter in place alone with our families but we will meet together at the finish line of this horror.

Apart but Together.

We must not loose that.   We must remember all that is good.   All that makes everything worth fighting (staying home) so hard for because we want to get back to less apart and more togetherness.

Then we will be

Together until we must part.

 

364 Days

So tomorrow marks one year on this magic carpet ride.   Last year at this time, I was prepping for my thyroidectomy.   You know the usually stuff you do prior to a surgery – make sure your will is up to date, make sure the house is clean, make sure the fridge is stocked, Oh and make sure Thanksgiving Dinner was ordered.

Going in I was prepared for the recovery of the surgery.   I was prepared with having to deal with getting my dosage right for my meds to replace my now missing thyroid.   Easy Peasy.    I really was not worried at all.    You see, I knew so many people who either had their thyroid removed or knew someone who had theirs removed.    Another ace in the hole was one of my sons although he has a thyroid, it has not functioned since birth.   To be honest, my only concern was that a surgeon was going to literally be slicing open my neck.   That was my main focus.   Everything else would just work itself out.

So now I am one day shy of my surgery and I realize that it wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be.   The blip on the screen was much bigger than I thought it would be.  Still trying to adjust the thryoid meds which is really what I attribute my 15 pound weight gain this last year too.   Oh and the fact that my running took a dive. It’s a work in progress.

This last year has been an adjustment both physically and mentally.   Prior to the surgery I in my mind was chasing a 4:15 marathon, completed a 50 K, and was pushing my limits.   I did not realize that post surgery dealing with parathyroid glands that decided that they no longer would want to function properly that my limits would change and change drastically.  I didn’t even know that there was such a thing as Parathyroid gland let alone 4 that were very important.

Over time, I may get back to where I was but realistically speaking I am not getting any younger.   In less than 2 years, I will be hitting a number many refer to as a milestone even, but we aren’t there yet!

Where we are is a celebration of where I am today.

Today

Is it where I want to be?   Not exactly.   That being said….

I ACTUALLY RAN THIS WHOLE THING.

There was no walking.   There was no stopping.   There was only running.   And while I will admit that it was so much harder than it used to be and I was so happy to hit the end, it is so much better than it has been.    Life gives you what it gives you.   Today it gave me 3 miles.   For today that is enough.   I admit that some days it’s not, but as I continually remind myself….. You can’t live in the past.    You can’t spend your life living the should of , could of, and would of’s of life.   You get what you get and you don’t get upset.   And my personal favorite that my sister hates….

It is What it is!

So today, I look back on not where I was prior to 11-18-2016, but how far I have come since then.    The support that my friends have given me has helped me continue to push on.    You have been there when I have complained about my aches, my pains, my feeling tired all the time,  and everything else in between.   So this is my shout out to you……   For listening when I complained.   For understanding.  For your ideas and suggestions.  For run/walking with me when I need to and when I need to again and everything in between.   It hasn’t been an easy year learning to deal with “the new normal,” but thanks for taking the trip with me.

 

PS – I’m still following my training plan for the January Half Marathon.   One week down:)

It’s Nice to Say Hello

Race Recap – Part 2

Now some may say that I have a certain style or flair when I run.   Me, I just say that I like to have fun.    For the most part I do usually wear pink, but sometimes I do like to take it up a notch.   NJ Half was going to be one of those events.  Another Mama and I conspired to bring tutus and skirts for everyone:):)

There may have been some initial grumbling (ahem), but everyone went with the program.   I love it when a plan comes together.

Then off we went….

During the course of the race our group separated slightly.    I was still running with one of my friends, when someone came up from behind and asked, “Are you accidentally Running Mama?”

I have to say that I was surprised to say the least.    But then I recognized her from her online profile too!    We were able to chat a few miles and actually meet the “real” person behind the curtain.  There is something to be said about meeting someone in person that you follow online.   It’s funny because in a small way you feel like you already know them.   I would love to meet her for another run as it does seem like we have run a few of the same races.   She mentioned that she saw me in the Bronx but we didn’t’ get to connect.  I’m glad we did this day.  I will say that for a brief moment when we spit a VERY, VERY, VERY small part of me was sad that I wasn’t running the marathon.   That is right up until I realized how close to the finish line I was.

There are a few people that I know online that I’ve met up with at various events and it is always fun.    It’s funny too because it wasn’t till almost a mile in that I was like, “I think it’s time for real introductions.”   And of course, we both wanted a picture together.

NJHalf3

Later she shared this picture on her instagram account and wrote something very nice and made me want to run with her even more.

NJHalf2

That is the awesome thing about running and runners.   I’ve actually met people at races and chat the entire race with them.   Some I never see again.   Some become Facebook friends and I still never see again.  Then some become real friends.   There is something about running with someone that takes away the pretenses.   You can’t worry about impressing someone when you are trying to run.   This is why running friends get to know you better than most people ever will.   Running does not take the place of a good therapist, but there is something to be said for knowing that you can open up to your running friends the way that it might be hard to do eye to eye over coffee.

I will say this is another one of the many reasons I don’t usually wear headphones during a race.   I love to listen to the sounds of the race – the spectators, the footsteps, and the opportunity to chat or listen to those around me.   Obviously, this depends on my goal for the race but I’m never coming in first anyway:)

Do you like to chat while your run?

 

 

 

Running With Friends!!!

As you know, I’ve started transitioning to morning running on days that I can or truthfully days that I’m motivated to get out of my PJ’s early.   What has really helped is meeting friends.   Hard to not put on your running shoes when you know someone is expecting you to run with them.  Plus it really is a nice way to start the day – chatting with a friend.    I used to do this over coffee.   Now I seem to do it over the miles.

running friends

Yesterday was another such day.   I had another 9 miles on my calendar which really is nice to get out of the way earlier in the day.   It does remove that feeling in the back of my head telling me and wondering, “you’ve got to run” or ” When are you going to run?”    Plus, I live with a family of late sleepers.   If I’m lucky, I usually can get out and back in before anyone even notices  depending on the run.   Great thing about this run is that not only was I meeting Genine again, but Dawn was making a guest appearance!   I haven’t seen or run with Dawn I believe all summer long.  Not sure how that happened with the exception of we both have a house full of kids, she works, and we’ve got a lot going on.   September is right around the corner though which means that we can settle into a normal routine.

I was scheduled to run 9 miles again which seems to be my new norm I’m realizing with various paces and such.   This run was supposed to be at a 10:40 pace witch is slightly faster than my easy runs of 11+++.      Both Dawn and I were excited to run together, but for some reason she was doubting if she would run the whole 9 at the 10:40 pace.   I’m not really sure why she was doubting it because she is much faster than she realizes it or at least cares to admit.   She more than proved that today as we kept a rocking pace the entire run and only stopped for a potty break at mile 3 and a water break around 5 1/2.   Other than that we kept on trucking.    Since Dawn wasn’t wearing her watch as is her norm, I was the time keeper.   That being said, she set the pace for a most of the run and I just monitored it.   There were several times that I needed to tell my friend to slow down as she was moving way to fast.

We did it.   We finished 9.45 in 1:33:36.   Not sure of what our average pace was, but we rocked the splits!   When all was said and done we had a really great run.

splitsNot only was it a great run time wise, but it was a great run because I got to run it with a friend.   During the run, Dawn said something that was so true when we were talking about marathon training as she’s training for NYCM.   She was saying along the lines about how I’ve been running so many miles lately and you just can’t do that many alone as it’s a mental thing.   It really is true too.   Yes, I do like running alone.   Yes, I do like running with friends.   They both have their advantages.   The biggest advantage to running with friends though is that the miles really do not seem as long!

Then I come home and post my run on a running group that Dawn and I belong to.   She posted this in response

“A running friend will run with you; a real friend gently guides you for 9 miles as you talk yourself into what you can do until you believe what she already knows.”

All I can say is that one of the best things that running has brought into my life besides killer calves is the friends that I have made along the way.   Sometimes as Mom,  many of your friends are parents of your child’s friends.   That works when they are little and you have to go everywhere with them, but as they grow those friendships change as everyone gets caught up in their daily activities.   It doesn’t mean that you aren’t friends, it just means it’s harder to find time to see them.   It is nice to have friends that are forged over the miles and that will stand the test of time.

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Do you run with friends?