Out In Front

Red ink…

Running is my new favorite form of exercise, and most of the time, it’s a good thing…

…Picture this…

Aging 5K runner heads to the gym to do something after sitting still for days following a back injury borne of rigorously lifting laundry baskets. (After this last birthday it seems that doing the simplest things can result in injury. Is this what getting older is like?? Another post…). One of the principles I live by (and Pink ink shares – recall the planning of outfits before chemo), shallow as it is, is that if I look better, I’ll feel better. So I head to the gym in matching Lucy workout gear complete with headband and cute gym shoes, I wasn’t at all sure that I could run given my back issues but I was determined to get moving even if I had to walk around the track. Once I got there and stretched a bit, I decided to try a run and, remarkably, it didn’t bother my back at all so I kept going albeit slowly after a sedentary week or so, After the first mile, I resolved that I could keep going for afew more laps especially at this pace, That’s when it happened…I spotted another jogger running at a steady enough pace who was probably not much older then I am, and I decided to keep pace with her. No problem right? Well as it turns out this runner was glancing sideways at me as well. Who knows what was going through her head, but she decided to speed up after a few side eyes. As I looked at her in her decidedly unfashionable gear, I picked up my pace as well, I’m not sure when it happened exactly, but I ended up determined to beat her, not just to keep up with her! By the end of my second mile (yes, I ran two miles despite barely being able to walk into the gym!) I was In a full out sprint – out in front of my nemesis – an older, frumpier version of myself! I was breathless but satisfied.

It struck me how crazy this all was, and I had to laugh to myself as I headed to the showers and then to a massage to apologize to my body for putting it through this ordeal.

As I prepare to join Barb and so many of her friends from all over the country and especially right here in Phoenix in the 20th Annual Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure in Phoenix tomorrow morning, it strikes me that my girl Pink Ink has been in the race of her life for the past year, that she has long passed the two mile mark, and while the finish line is still elusive, in my experience there is nothing like the joy of the second wind that you get when you realize that you can keep going, that the race is not over for you, and that you might have just have hit your stride. As I watched Pink Ink tonight reveling in the joy of bringing together so many for such a cause as this, I know that she is breathless as I was when I glanced to the side at the embodiment of my fears, but she has also strengthened her resolve to outrun it! You go . . .and I’ll be right there with you (at 6:00 in the morning!)…We all will!

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. JC Ellis
    Oct 14, 2012 @ 15:01:11

    Great post Red Ink! Thanks for linking it to fb! I haven’t read your blog in awhile…It’s amazing how we push ourselves in the face of a little competition. It’s the fuel that allows 10 min. milers like me to run a 9 minute mile during a 5k. The ego does not want to be out run by someone older, frumpier and not as cutely attired! :>) Cheers to you for running your race!


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