Sunday, October 2, 2011

Journal 67 Fall

I know..the word "autumn" is one of 'those' words for me--not pretentious, but we're leading into Canadian winter. Fall seems the appropriate terminology.
Fall means a kind of buckling down. We (I) start eating more. We get ready for all these family holidays (sometimes they feel mine-field-ish), Thanksgiving, leading into winter and Christmas.
I tend to hole up, cleaning more than I should, cooking more chicken, snacking on carbs, and enjoying (?) cooler runs.
I ran another 17 k yesterday (11 ish miles). It hurt. Alot. At one point, on mile 10, I had to stop and use some construction railing to stretch out. I felt alot better after that.
The whole run was a success, based on the fact that I never fell back on walking, and I got, no kidding every single city green light on my city run. That NEVER happens.
But my pace was slow, slower than when I ran in high summer. I couldn't figure it out--I enjoyed myself more, I lost myself more, but I ran at a shameful, jogging pace. Not sure what happened.
And hear this--no runner's high. Nothing. I will admit I lost myself enough to lose focus on what was playing on my ipod, but that is no substitute for flying out of your shoes, metaphorically, and soaring over every problem in your life.

I hobbled the rest of Saturday. I needed extra dinner, and an extra shower.
In the morning, this morning, I needed even more water, and I took a tylenol one to stand upright, I'm ashamed to admit.
I looked outside. It was a cold, grey, iron day. And then the rain began to fall.
I wanted to do a cute little 5k today, a little afternoon salute to all the feet pounding the pavement in this morning's Run for the Cure, but I couldn't manage that. Too much pain, too much risk. I settled for opening an August edition of Running for Women and reading about training advice, and then my sister and I ate a dinner of curry-chicken wraps, hummus, and chips. The dizziness went away. More water.
I think about Saturday's long run, and what it took for my head to get there (your legs must be strong, but your head must be stronger), and I felt pride in my psychological commitment to this painful 'sport' I have chosen, has chosen me, and then I read the beginner training program in the magazine and realized that despite bad times (literally and figuratively) I am no longer a beginner. According to Running for Women, in spite of my lack of formal races, lack of awards/accolades, I'm really an intermediate. Weird. When did this happen?

I continue to trawl along the city streets, I continue to aim for morning runs during the week--it is a true dream of mine, to do my weekday running at the crack of dawn, and start my day off in the most disciplined way possible, but also in the most dreamy.
Because running is a dream sometimes. Reading about it makes me remember the high, the beat of my pulse, and I forget all about the pain, the drudgery that sometimes invades, and those days with leg cramps, stomachaches, shortness of breath...all of it.
Like anything we love. It saturates us with frustration only to grant us pure freedom.

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