When I was growing up my musical influences were driven purely by Casey Kasem and what was on my parents’ turntable. Top 40 radio and records of the 60s and 70s. As kids we lugged boom boxes on our shoulders and played air drums to “In the Air Tonight.” I thought of Mick Jagger as frightening and David Bowie, strangely enough, utterly cool. I was in love with John Taylor, but nothing, I repeat nothing was more romantic than my first love – Dan Fogelberg’s 1979 hit, “Longer.” Nuh-thing. I loved that song. I would crank the volume and croon along at the top of my lungs, eyes closed, swaying with a clenched fist on my pubescent heart. To watch me you would think I was in my own private soap opera, swooning over the latest bell-bottomed beau. Nothing moved me more than Longer. I was ten.
Times haven’t changed. Sunday marked my longest run on New Guinea. As a Valentine’s Day gift to myself I ran nine and I am still swooning. My feet haven’t seen 9.1 miles since running for TnT back in 2006. Even in the training phase I didn’t go over 8+ and that was right before I got hurt. I’m on a high of my own doing. But. But! But, here’s the thing…drum roll please – NO pain. None. Nada. Nothing. I thought for sure I would have a little ache somewhere come Monday morning. Some little creak in the hip, the knee, the something. No. Not a one. Not even stiffness. I’ve been pinching myself for reality checks because the rest of me doesn’t want to talk.
In truth, I thought nine would suck. For starters, my tread can’t be programed for longer than 99 minutes and I knew I needed to run at least 100. Side note: If there is one thing I have learned about myself it’s this – the slower I go, the more perfect my form. Perfect form equals an injury-free me. But, anyway. I planned to run 101 minutes but I couldn’t tell New Guinea that’s what I wanted. To make matters worse, I’m obsessed about numbers. It was a dilemma I solved by jumping on and hitting Quick Start. My stats wouldn’t be saved, but what the hell. Maybe I need to get off the numbers thing. But, then there’s this music thing. I am an extremely emotional runner. Without music all I do is think and become my own worst enemy. I need music to stay sane. Except I am in a rut when it comes to what I call my “run songs.” I need new motivators that aren’t techno dance hits with booming bass. There’s only so many times I can listen to someone’s auto-tuned garbage before I lose my sh!t. Enter Spotify. My Kisa is a genius, setting me up with shared playlists from other runners. I feel like a DJ with a world of music at my fingertips. Maybe I’ll find Dan Fogelberg and run even Longer. Just watch me.