I’ve been almost dreading starting back running because I’m afraid of feeling the first few tingles of oncoming pain..not because of pain but that it signals that i’m not healed. I’m so sick of feeling it and I’ve actually enjoyed a little reprieve from the pressure I seem to constantly put on myself to run. I miss it, I feel lost without it, I’ve had to make do with spinning and it’s been a long road. I got up this morning and it just felt like I’m supposed to try today. My last therapy session was a good one. Mr. Masochism couldn’t even get a slight grimace out of me because my leg and hip are doing so much better. So, I waited and went on about my day. Late this afternoon, I went to the park that I haven’t seen in almost 3 years…but it was the park where I took my first run. It was 3:30 in the morning and I was wearing khakis and an old navy t-shirt with my REALLY old adidas Supernova Cushion shoes that I used for work/walking/wal-mart hell, etc. That day, I had no idea what I was doing but something in me told me to run because I was out of options….kinda like today. A lot like today. And like 3 years ago, it was just me and park. No ipod, no sunglasses, just a Garmin this time. I left the other stuff at the truck because I wanted to just not think about anything, but feel. I started off easy at about a 10 minute pace for the first couple of tenths and gradually increased. My last .2 were about a 7:35 pace. I was flying and for the first time in a long time, I felt free again. For over 8 minutes, I felt like Katrina–someone I’m still getting more familiar with. I finished the mile in 8:28. No way I can hold that for longer than a couple of miles, but it convinced me that the spinning and sporadic swimming did a great job keeping my cardio fitness going. And no pain, tightness, twinges, etc in my knee or hip. Nothing. And when I was done, like that first run, I was breathing hard, sweating, kinda wobbly, shaking my head, wondering what in the hell am I doing. But this time, I had the hugest smile on my face. And like that first run, I don’t feel like a runner yet…but maybe there’s something there that I can’t let go just yet. I’ll be a runner again. Like Cattano emphasized, I’m going to enjoy this small run. And the next one and the next one. For me..not for a race, not for anybody else, just for me. No more pressure. Only roses and the occasional thorns.