Friday, September 11, 2009


I am so inspired by Kristin Armstrong’s writing. She has this wonderful way of making me smile and feel pretty damn good about myself with her words. She did it again this morning when I stopped by her blog.

“Remember what you love to do. Don't put it in a chest in the attic of your being and leave it for your kids to find long after you are gone.”

That’s the kind of stuff she writes that really gets to my soul. I read those words like watching a scene from a movie, they are so vivid and I can picture the entire movie written around that one scene. I love writing like that.

Now before I get into this next topic I want to remind all of you who have read this blog for awhile that I never promised to be consistent or non-contradictory. So no laughing or snickering! For all of you who haven’t read for very long, DO NOT GO BACK AND READ ANY OF MY POSTS ABOUT BEING INJURED!

I have a few friends who are injured and are not currently running. This is a topic that is close to my heart because I know that my annual injury is just around the corner. Being a runner who can’t run is the most challenging part of running for me. I have matured (stop laughing) enough, though, to realize that what I’m struggling with is short-term loss and not significant. Having an injury that puts you out for a few months always seems life-ending but in the big picture it’s nothing more than a tiny blip on the radar.

Running is a life-long pursuit or, better yet, a way of life. It’s more than something we do it is what we are. We are runners and that means so much more than just strapping on expensive shoes and funny looking shorts every day or two. So much more in fact that when we can’t run we are STILL runners at heart. The fact that we miss it so much just emphasizes that point. I’ve said before that when I’m injured and am forced into a gym, I really want to wear a shirt that says, “I’m a runner, I don’t belong here”. As runners we don’t join gyms that we only use sporadically as a way of getting in shape. We don’t buy exercise equipment that will eventually become furniture as a way of changing our lives. We first and foremost RUN and that changes us. We may do those other things as a way to help our running but running will always be at the core if we truly find that love out there on the road. And that, my friends, makes us runners for life even through those times when we can’t.
The fact is that most of us will return to running after an injury and when we do, WOW, it’s the most amazing run in the world! We will find our hearts again and our bodies are re-awakened to the wonderful pain and pleasure of each step. Many people will never know that feeling. Some because they won’t, others because they can’t. I pray that I’ll always remember that and keep it in the back of my mind. I have this wonderful gift that some would give anything to be able to do and I never want to take it for granted.

The next time I feel down about a bad run or I’m upset because I only had time for a short run or when I get my injury and can’t run for awhile, I’ll try to remember the guy or gal in a wheelchair who’s never taken a step. I’ll try to remember the soldier who used to run and now can’t. I’ll try to remember that what I’m upset about is something that most people can’t understand and that it’s a gift that I’ve been given and one that I’m somewhat obligated to give too. I’ll try to remember the big picture and realize that I’m nothing but a whisper in that conversation.
I know whole-heartedly that it’s easier to know and believe these things than it is to actually live them. It’s the living thing that I struggle with.

Happy Birthday

On a totally different note,


Thought I’d go back and re-post this picture of us when I actually met her last year out in L.A. I’ve always liked this picture because it’s the first time I’d ever met a fellow blogger and was so blown away by how wonderfully nice and interesting she was! Pay no attention to the jerk on the left but make sure to notice the cutie in the middle!

Thanks for listening


cath said...

yes! I love the 'big picture' thang! It's all just a little part of it. Life 'is what it is', running or unable to~it is all just moments in time...I love the stuff running (or nto being able to) teaches me/us about life...

Meg Runs said...

I love Kristen Armstrong too...thanks for reminding me to appreciate what I do and how I do it...running!

JenZen said...

Ahhh - great post and reminder Willie. So true - all of it. And I LOVE the picture of you, Penny and Velcro!!! Such a great pic of all of you!

Terri said...

That is a great pic of you and Penny. I have to admit, when I was on her blog and saw the link to your latest post, and saw "injuries" as the title, I thought, "oh no, not again Willie!"

Think positively, it might not happen this year. And thanks for the visual image perspectives, those are helpful.

Southbay Girl said...

You and injuries!!!

Thanks so very much for posting about my birthday! And I love the picture of the three of us! I think Velcro looks the best!! Hopefully we'll have another picture taken soon!!

I feel very lucky to be able to run, no matter how shitty my run is! I still get frustrated and irritated with a shitty run-but VERY GRATEFUL!!

Calyx Meredith said...

I am so with you about keeping it in perspective. But dude - let's work on that "annual injury" record shall we? Here's to an injury free year!!