Well, I woke up this morning after a very restless night, feeling very lethargic. After 2 (okay, maybe 3!) cups of coffee, I was STILL dragging?!
I really needed to run today and I was NOT happy with this lack of energy! I also wasn't thrilled about going out for my first cold weather run of the season! This always requires a little more thought in regards to.....WHAT TO WEAR?! I was walking around the house thinking, "Okay....is it cold enough for a hat? Gloves? Where did I PUT the gloves? Will I need long sleeves AND a jacket? Maybe just short sleeves and jacket? No jacket....only long sleeves and gloves? Maybe instead of a hat, I'll pull out the ear bands.....Okay, where are THOSE?" At least the bottom half of my body was easy.....It was time to pull out the running tights for the first time in awhile! "Oh, wait....what about that nifty neck gator/scarf thingy that I got from the NYRR last year at the marathon? That thing is AWESOME! Yeah, where would THAT be?"
So, after quite a bit of digging through boxes and drawers, I finally came up with what I THOUGHT I would need for running!! By then, I was getting a little hungry.....NO, I cannot put this off any longer......MUST.RUN.NOW!!
When I first headed out it was really windy and cold and I was really glad that I found that "neck gator/scarf thingy!" That thing is really a big help with the breathing when it's really cold out!
I didn't run too far today, but I realized once again that it is really true that even if you aren't feeling that great or energetic....just get out the door! You will feel so much better for it!! My legs felt good, some of the fog seemed to have lifted from my head....I just felt pretty darn good for a tired, old lady-runner!! AND.....as I was running....... I had an epiphany!
Here it is.........RUNNING IS MY GIFT!!!!!
Okay, before those of you who have seen me run, or waited FOREVER for me to finish a race, start to snicker, giggle, or roll on the floor in laughter over this statement.....Let me explain!!
First of all, I have been spending some time since I left my job, thinking about what I want to do, or CAN do next. I told my friend Mary that I don't have that many choices, because I'm really not qualified to do much....you know, not really GIFTED, or trained in many areas! Mary very sweetly objected and said that I am good at so many things, and that set me to thinking more about my gifts (or lack of) in many areas of my life!
As I was running, I was not thinking of "gifts" in relation to jobs so much, but just "gifts" in general.....AND THEN.....it hit me...RUNNING IS MY GIFT!!!??! I was thinking about how in the past few years, I have concerned myself so much with the fact that I am such a slow runner. Many times I have thought about people who can just get out there and REALLY run! These people make it look so EASY to run fast. I know I shouldn't compare myself to other runners, but I have often wished that I could have the "gift" of being a fast runner, or to be a GIFTED runner! Today though, it finally hit me.....MY GIFT IS THAT I CAN RUN.....PERIOD!!
Talk about an EPIPHANY!! I am a very slow runner.I am overweight (working on this one!),and I have arthritis issues. I have had a broken foot recently that still gives me issues.I have had some pretty significant bouts of asthma (hospitalized a couple of times), and yet...... I CAN STILL RUN!!!
Running really IS such a gift to me! Why did I start running in the first place, and WHY is it such a gift? I started running for a variety of reasons. When I first started running, probably 35 years ago, my main objective was weight control,since running is an extremely efficient way to burn calories and control, or even lose weight.I also ran to help with stress relief, since I was a single Mom with 3 kids at that time. I felt that running would be beneficial in so many ways, and little did I know that I would really start to enjoy running! Somewhere along the way, over the years, I realized that setting goals and accomplishing them was a great way to keep motivated! I really enjoyed running the Peachtree Road Race in Atlanta every 4th of July with my friend Jody.
Sometimes the quiet and solitude of running alone can help create an inner sense of peace that is much needed, and other times running with a friend or even a group of runners can be so much fun! I have had different running goals over the years, and have even gotten away from running for periods of time, but I always tend to come back to running!
Wow...I guess you could say that not only have I received the GIFT of running, but I have been using that gift to GIVE to others.....through my fundraising! I joke around about how, "If I'm going to be stupid enough to run 26.2 miles....I have to have a darn good reason to do it!"........But it's really not a joke....I guess I really AM somewhat of a "gifted runner!" I am so very proud to run with Team Hole in the Wall and to help send sick children to The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp.....After all, that is SO much more important than being a fast runner!
So, I guess before going to sleep tonight, I will say a special prayer of gratitude for my GIFT OF RUNNING!