Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Paula and Running

"She was a unique constellation of attributes; she was my Halley's comet. But the universe is designed to break your heart, right?"

I didn't wake up this morning. OK so I did eventually wake up but it wasn't a normal morning for me. I love mornings, I really do. They are my absolute favorite time of day. To say I'm a morning person is an understatement. This morning, however, I knew something was wrong so I called in sick to work and stayed in bed most of the day. SO NOT ME! I wasn't really sick but I just didn't feel right. I don't know what inner demon I am fighting but today they won and I don't like it.

Being home did give me the chance to catch up on my reading however. If I haven't mentioned it before I'm a big fan of (read in love with) Paula Radcliffe. I bought her book a few weeks ago and have not had much of chance to sit and read it like I wanted to. Today I read all about her younger years of running and growing up in England. I always wonder about autobiographies because they are told through the eyes of the person who lived it and sometimes I wonder if their description of events would be the same if they were told through someone else's eyes. If what I read is truly how things were she was really an amazing runner her entire life. She writes of running in a way that makes it sound easy. Rarely does she ever mention how hard it is, how much time it takes, how it can make your body hurt so much. She speaks of it's beauty and grace, of it's life changing effects and it's ability to heal our minds when we are stressed or worried.

I guess I like hearing about the positive aspects more than the negative. Don't get me wrong, I gripe about running as much as the next person and you've heard a lot of those gripes here, but maybe that's because I take the positives for granted. It is obvious that we runners find running more beneficial than harmful, otherwise we wouldn't keep doing it! And when we are around other runners it's almost not worth discussing the joys of running because we all know and have experienced them. So maybe that's why it's so easy to discuss injuries, or sickness, or tiredness or whatever else ails us harriers.

I know that is the reason I started reading blogs. I loved hearing about other's experiences with running and how much they enjoyed the running itself and the things that running brought into their lives. I would never have become a fan of California sunsets if I hadn't started reading blogs. I would never have known how irritating vineyards can become after 22 miles if I hadn't been reading blogs. I may never have known the trials of training for an Olympic distance triathlon if I hadn't started blogging. There are a million other things that I owe to you guys that I probably will never thank you for so take this as a blanket thank you for everything. It's funny how one aspect of our lives can bring us together and make us all friends without ever meeting or talking (OK so maybe I've met and talking with one of you). I think it's those positive aspects of running that we all silently share that provide that unseen bond across the miles between us.

Reading a book like Paula's I am reminded of these things. So keep the experiences coming and don't worry about complaining or griping. I understand where you're coming from and where you're going.

P.S. I still don't like her husband.

Thanks for listening


Calyx Meredith said...

Hope you are refreshed after a day in bed with Paula ;D. I have never heard of her, but I love having new books to check out. Most runners seem called by some inner piece of themselves to run. Not me. I struggle (as you pointed out!) to even feel worthy of calling myself a runner. I do run. But claiming to be a runner in front of other "real" runners? HARD to do. I began running because I had to. (Boot camp.) It was amazing to discover I had that piece inside of me - that joyful running piece! It wasn't maybe strong enough on its own to leap out and pull me into running - but once I found running, that part sang. Who knew that I had an inner runner all along?

I'm like you in that I like the positive accounts - but it truly helps me to read the gripes too! It lets me know that even "real" runners have to push through muck to get themselves out the door. (But maybe that's justification for my oh-so-whiny post this morning about being tired, abysmally tired!)
Here's to "Returning to the fray with renewed vigga!" as my grandpa used to say. Peace. (And apologies for the ridiculously long comment!)

RBR said...

Hmpf! Just last we you were in bed with me sharing PB & J (1500 miles apart for those of you who are sitting there with raised eyebrows!). Now you are waxing philosophical with Paula Radcliffe? I supposed I should be jealous, but since Paula is one getting the seconds I guess I still win.

Yep, I, of course, posted a whiny, griping post just moments before reading yours. It is inspiring to read about the beauty that comes of running, but I do like to know i am not alone with the "bad runs." It let's me know that they happen to everyone and it doesn't mean you are doomed to crappy runs forever.

Hope you are feeling back to your chipper self in no time.

PKPWV said...

I ran the NYC Marathon when paula ran it...that's my claim to fame!

I dodn't run today-just couldn't do it-too mentally and physically exhausted. This job is a rat fuck and we haven't started shooting yet!!!

yeah i heard about the number 1 ranked QB going to Ohio State-whatever dude!!!

Southbay Girl

Maryland Girl said...

Sometimes it is just better to stay at home! And if you have a good book to read EVEN better!

PKPWV said...

How's paula today? have your grown fonder of her husband yet?

And how are you feeling? It's going to be a toasty weekend here. Wish i could send it your way! I'm sitting with a swollen sore foot-but I got a run in this morning which I'm happy about!

I have two more days of freedom then I'm back to the shitty work grind that is the tv episodic world.....

I'm bored-going to go watch a movie now!