Rewind: March (Or, where running tells me: ‘Let’s Stay Together’)
I don’t want to talk about it.
Yes, I ran a marathon… but I also technically started training for my next one.
Yes, I stretched and took time off and cross trained. (I had an affair with the stairmaster but it was just a rebound).
In short, I was humbled by a stupid minor pain and got stuck in a non-running rut. I blame calf problems, but it was also mental (what isn’t?).
Saturday I visited my happy place, finally feeling fresh, optimistic, and ready to tackle at least five miles outside -something I hadn’t done in two weeks, which is for-ev-ER in Taylor World. I strapped my iPhone armband to my right gun bicep, hit Play on the Chris Thile Pandora station, tightened my new kicks, and went.
But… the headphones weren’t happy in my ears. My jacket sleeves felt restrictive. Mile one felt like mile 18. My headband was sliding off. I had a persistent wedgie and I really had to pee (sorry, this is real life).
By mile 1.97 (I assume; I purposefully didn’t track my mileage thank GOD), I just felt off. I was easily distracted. I felt slow.
Squirrels are stupid. The flowers aren’t blooming fast enough. I look dumb in purple. Who told Darius Rucker he could cover ‘Wagon Wheel’ and who decided it sounded good? Why don’t pancakes have zero calories? Does my butt look big in these spandex? Rolling Stones or Beatles? Coffee.
Well, they say relationships take work. So running and I were about to have some alone time (or therapy or counseling or whatever couples use these days to fix their problems).
It was decided that by completely disconnecting from music and numbers (caloric burn, pace, mileage, heart rate) we could get back to basics.
It felt weird and naked, like when you leave your phone at home, or leave clothes in your closet. But then I liked it. (I’ll let you at it on the naked jokes).
I became completely in tune with my stride, breathing, and all-over form. The sun felt warmer on my guns arms. The birds chirping were a welcome sound. I felt more inclined to smile at others. Pace what? iTunes playlist who?!
Mile six showed up before I knew it and I wanted to keep going (like the normal Taylor). But having just fully recovered, I thought it best not to push it. The road would be there tomorrow.
And that’s when I got it: No matter how long you decide to stay in your stupid little rut, whether it’s two silly weeks or 22 not-so-silly years, the road will always be there. The trails will always be there.
Running doesn’t go anywhere unless, of course, you do.
I guess couples’ therapy does work after all.