Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Lone Runner

I usually run alone, even when I'm running with a group.  It's because no one runs the same pace that I run plus I'm not a very chatty runner.  Trying to breathe is enough of a challenge for me.

So I usually run alone.

I'm quite ok with that.  I like being alone in my head - my mind wanders, I solve problems I didn't even know I had and I get a little better at negotiating with my inner non-runner who'd rather be home on the couch.

On Boxing Day, a gaggle of runners drove to Hamilton to run the Boxing Day 10 miler.  From the first step until we crossed the finish line, I ran with my friends John and Michelle.  They ran a pace that was just far enough outside my comfort zone that I spent the better part of the race trying to come up with a polite way of telling them to just leave me alone so that I could collapse in a heap.  I never did find the words and, as a result, I crossed the finish line in a time that I will forever have trouble beating.  It felt amazing. I was so proud and so grateful to have been carried along.  It taught me the power of running with other people.

Tonight I headed out for a run in the snow.  Doug headed out at the same time.  That rarely happens.  We were going the same way and running the same distance.  That also rarely happens.  I figured we'd run together across the bridge and then I'd watch him disappear as I found my comfortable pace and he found his.

Tonight we ran together.  I decided that I would use the opportunity to push myself like I did on Boxing Day. I'd run a pace that was not comfortable, but not deadly either, and see what I could do.  If that was fast enough for Doug, fabulous.  If not, he was always welcome to pull ahead and head off on his own.

I pushed.  He stayed.  We didn't talk much.  I was completely exhausted when we got home.  He gave me a high five.

It was a great run.

No comments:

Post a Comment