common ground...

so here's the thing.


if you are one, you get it.

if you aren't. cool. no problem.
(i won't think any less of you if you don't want to ever run.)

runners all start at the same place.

square one.

(like on pathfinder on the price is right. i love that show. i would love to be a contestant)

you start at the beginning.

and work your way up. step by step. literally. (like duana likes to say :)

if you go the wrong way, or something bad happens (injury, set backs, etc) you pause. stop. heal.

and keep going when you can.

heck, this is a general life principle, right?

everyone who runs has to earn the place they work up to.

every step builds onto the next. all of the blood, sweat & tears. (and those 3 are all part of running...)

sure some folks are more adept at things like athletics. just like some are gifted singers, painters, scientists, librarians :), etc.

but almost anyone who runs starts, literally, at step one. and at so many ages. and from so many backgrounds.

heavy. slim. old. young. disabled. you name it, there is that kind of runner out there. i've witnessed it all at every race i've been to or ran.

seriously. to see an 70+ year old person finish a *marathon*?? or the dad pushing his disabled adult son for miles and miles race after race? i have absolutely no reason not to register and run my first 26.2 this year...

and we runners are all just 'average' folks for the most part.

if we weren't, running wouldn't be exploding in numbers like it has been the past 10 years.

those who do run, in any capacity, really understand each other. we relate to each other. we can strike up completely random conversations at a race without a hitch. we can talk about PR's and what GU we like, and hitting the wall, and 'what model of asics do you have?', or 'is there a medal to that race?' and the list goes on.. and getting that high of loving to talk about your passion with those who also share in it is just plain enjoyable...

when i first started running it took me a solid year almost to feel like i wasn't faking it to be considered part of the 'club' of those who ran.

now i'm proud of it and feel like such a different person than 3 years ago.

the things it's done for me physcially are secondary.

and contrary to popular belief, i DO EAT. i do eat 'bad' things now and then. i also am lucky to have tall thin genes in my family...but i get the 'go eat something!' line a lot....grrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

and on that note, it's amazing to me sometimes how folks will say things like 'who's chasing you??' when they hear i run.

yeah, it can be funny, i know they're kidding. but in a sense, there *is* a stigma by non-runners to judge those who run races. i really don't get why. i know that some folks are totally passionate about some things that are not my thing. but more power to them to love something they do...

on the other hand i have that camp of folks who are like 'you go girl! run like the wind! me? i'll sit back and have a frosty cold one, but you go!'

and i'm happy to have those supporters too...seriously. i think of those folks during my races often! support is SO big in this sport...

i've been corresponding on a fun social level lately with leah. found her on facebook :) (that's amazing!) leah was part of a major documentary on marathoning. (she's 2nd from the right here with a bunch of other cool peeps from the movie)

and it's been so very cool! to know that i can just talk and support someone in chicago, who i've never met, in a way that she and i and so many others understand. and i *love* that! i hope i can meet leah in person some day...and thank her for being so inspirational ~ this 2 hour film seriously *did* change me and made me believe...

i run for me.

i run for my friends.

i run *with* my other friends.

i run for so many reasons. everyone who runs does.

it's a feeling that NO ONE can understand unless they try the sport, and become hooked like so many of us who take part have.

it takes time.

it takes dedication.

it takes discipline.

and quite honestly it takes a solid 6 months, to me, to even scratch the surface of 'what am i doing?? why the heck would i want to freeze my arss off on a 10 degree morning at 7:30am to go run outside??'

but the end result?

it feels *phenomenal* when you realize what you are capable of.

a pride you can't describe. and to meet folks along the way that become family, soul mates in all kinds of senses, well, who on earth wouldn't want that?

now if i can just get folks to stop asking about why i don't have kids....

sigh. thanks for reading. enjoy whatever it is that is your passion and do with no holds barred. it's the best thing...

(steps down off the soapbox)


Zoomy said...
January 18, 2009 at 12:04 PM

I could have written this's all so true. Nearly 3 years ago I started my running journey and now have a marathon, 2 25ks, 3 half marathons and a bunch of shorter stuff under my belt...and 1561 logged miles for '08. People ask me how I did it and I think they sometimes don't believe me when I say I started with a walk/run program (Couch-to-5k) and that I couldn't run more than a block without having to stop. They also can't believe that I run with asthma, but I spent far too many years using any variety of health issues as excuses for being sedentary.

Of course there are others who probably wonder how someone who runs as much as I do is still 15-20#s over her ideal weight--but that one's because I like to eat...a lot. And running is too often a good excuse to eat...too much.

How awesome that you have been in touch with one of the runners from the documentary--I assume you are speaking of "The Spirit of the Marathon?" I saw that a year ago. I already knew that I was going to enter my first marathon, at that point, but that solidified my resolve. I really need to watch it again now that I'm "experienced." I'm sure it would be MUCH more emotion-inducing this time around.

Marathon Maritza said...
January 18, 2009 at 11:50 PM

Hear hear! I totally hear you on everything you said. And WELL said, too. :)

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