Saturday is 80 days. 80 days since my last run. 80 days off my feet. 80 days without one of the loves of my life. Sure I have been “active” this summer. Hopping in the pool off and on, and getting a bike ride in here or there. there really is no substitute for the run though. Feeling the ground beneath my feet. Pushing forward with every step. Sweat oozing from my pours. No the pool and the bike have been good alternatives to keep me sane this summer, but Sunday cannot come fast enough.
This summer I’ve had to field the questions from those close to me that just don’t quite understand. Those that know I love to run, but don’t quite realize why I continue to do something that seems to keep me sidelined a lot, and thus “unhappy.” Wouldn’t I rather hang up the shoes? Try something else? What if your foot starts hurting again? What if something else happens? Why keep running if you are always hurt? To be honest they’re hard questions to answer if you don’t run.
I’ll give it a shot though.
No, I wouldn’t rather hang up the shoes in favor of something else. Even injured, running brings me some of the greatest joy in the world. Each week on Twitter I get to participate with some of the best people in #runchat and I love it. We answer questions about running, about this sport that some find insane, and don’t understand. If you’re a runner and on Twitter I highly recommend stopping by on a Sunday evening (1st and 3rd Sundays at 7PST, 2nd and 3rd Sundays at 5 PST), we are a great bunch of people with the fastest hour of the week flying by.
If my foot starts hurting what will I do? I will wait. Sometimes patiently and sometimes not so patiently. I will be back though, even my foot doctor knows I wouldn’t listen to someone who told me I couldn’t run again. I’m going to run again, and it will happen soon. If I have to wait some more time, I will wait some more time. 80 days is a long time, so what’s another few days? There are many stories out there of people who have suffered a lot worse than a stress fracture in their foot, and have come back to run faster than I ever will. So if my foot starts to hurt, I will search for other options. I will find a way to get back to running, and I will someday. I am a hard person to keep still. So if you tell me I can’t run, I won’t believe you.
Why keep running if I am always hurt? With multiple injuries over the years, plantar fasciitis, IT Band issues, stress fractures, tweaked knees, sprained ankles, my heel plates even cracked when I was younger (albeit from soccer and not running). I see them more as a badge of honor. I train mostly on my own. I find what works through different plans, different training. I run because I love it. Because it brings me great joy, but I run mostly because it is where I feel most connected with God, basking in the creation he has made. So I will continue to run, simply because I’ve been made to love it.
Sunday is coming fast. It’ll be here in 5 short days. It won’t be a long run, by my usual standards it won’t be a fast run. For a time I get to simply enjoy coming bach into running, getting myself back into shape. Picking myself bach up. Piecing bach together my normal running schedule.