I’m going to Maine this weekend. Right in the middle of training. This rings familiar. Case in point, 2005.
November 27, 2005
Saturday – a day of cloud cover and gray. Choppy conversation and quiet chaos. Six souls determined to be together despite a slew of hidden agendas. Even the 20 month old had somewhere (read – everywhere) to be. As the day wore on my intentions were uncovered. I was determined to stick to my training schedule and run. I wanted to run. Despite the snow falling on unfamiliar streets I wanted to run through them. A pre-printed map to guide me through the unknown territory. Protests I can never refuse kept me standing still; milling around in a crowded, noisy, unbearably hot, kid-filled toy store for what seemed like forever for no reason. A hiatus can last forever is one is not careful. I wasn’t taking any chances. I’ll say it again, I wanted to run. As dusk and dark started to settle my frustration started to bubble like giggles. It runs in the family, this angry laughter. Because I wasn’t running. As sitting around translated into sitting around doing nothing I realized it was now or never and never was definitely winning. So, I ran. Literally. I ran away from family to a treadmill at the hotel. I was a gerbil on a wheel going nowhere fast. I let statistics on the screen fascinate me – speed 4.6/incline 3 warming up…speed 4.4/incline 1 cooling down. I imagines falling off to keep myself straight. I imagined trees to keep me sane on this ridiculous machine. My first time running inside. My first time on a treadmill. Was this thing easier or harder? I’m not sure. Here’s what I know: I ran 10 minutes longer than my best
time duration: a solid hour. According to my mean running machine I ran 4.75 miles. 4.75 and yet I went nowhere.
Here and now – I love this post. It marked the beginning of a love affair with statistics. My first time on a treadmill. This is the first time I refer to it as gerbil-ish. I love how slow I ran. How careful I was not to fall off. You can’t tell I was deathly afraid of the thing. You can’t read my fear.
Here’s what else I love about this post. I put my foot down. I needed to run and out of sheet frustration ran more than I needed to. I was encapsulated by family; trapped by tradition and obligation and yet, yet I decided to leave them behind. Now, nearly six years later I am putting myself in the same situation. True, I am no longer training for a half marathon and true, someone is dying. The urgency to stay on track is simply not the same. However, I am training to walk 60 miles for a cancer charity and that must stand for something. If anything at all. It simply must.