After finishing a 5K, I wasn’t sure where I was going to go with this whole running thing. I took a week off, and then started getting up early to run. I mean early – my husband leaves for work at 6:30 and I run so slow if I want to get any distance covered I have to leave the night before. Just kidding. I leave at 5:15. That’s AM. It’s ridiculous.
I could have kept running on the treadmill at a decent hour, but about two weeks before the race I fell off. To be entirely accurate, I hopped off to adjust the fan to a more favorable position (blowing directly on me – I was hot), and for reasons I still can’t understand, absent-mindedly tried to step back on the treadmill while it was, uh, milling.
It shot me off the back and in the process gouged my shins and knees. I had super ugly scabs and still have the “Something happened here. Something bad” look going on both knees. And that was two months ago. I get nervous when I hop on a treadmill now. I think it’s the fear of the stupid thing I will do next, maybe stop to bend over and tie my shoes?
So outside is the way to go. My dog has a little pack to carry her waste disposal bags and my phone (it has compartments…) and away we go. It’s fun. It’s peaceful. I feel AWESOME when I’m done. I felt like I owned this little three mile section of Grand Rapids.
That was, until I hurt my shoulder. Running. It takes a special gift to hurt your shoulder running, so let me share it with you.
First, you don’t look at the ground. You look all around, at the pretty flowers that are blooming, the recycling bins people forgot to take in, the rabbit that just saw your dog and is bolting away. Also, make sure you are running downhill, otherwise this won’t work as well. Next you’ll want to trip over a little bump up in the sidewalk, but make sure you dog isn’t aware of it. It’s only this way that you will be able to have your arm fully extended when you fall. This is the crucial piece for ensuring shoulder injury, but downhill effect maximizes the amount of gravel that gets into your hands. And your knees. Oh, your knees.
I lost a little steam after that. I mean not that day, but in general. I’ve been out a few times since then, but I started cheating on running. Doing classes at the gym. Zumba, even. I love to dance and have the temptation to quit running altogether and adjust my career goals to being a Fly Girl on the off-chance that In Living Color makes a comeback.
But I can’t. Just like running that stupid 5K, I had to do it.
So I am running a 10K. It’s not until October, but given my propensity for ridiculous injury and extremely slow speed, I need to start now. I would describe my relationship with running as the ultimate love/hate one. I feel like I need to kick it’s ass but in the process, it kicks mine. Did you notice? The only time I use swear words on Big Binder is when I’m talking about running. It’s a determination and an energy that feels like a competition; but I’m only competing with myself. And I love it.