So what have I been doing for the past four months? The short answer is, a lot. But in keeping with the theme of my blog, I'll tell you that I haven't really been running. How can one blog about running when one isn't running? I've been asking myself this all summer. I've also been obsessing about the condition of my (still) injured hip, something I believe I was obsessing about in my last post. I wanted to come back to my blog high on endorphins from running. But that's still not my reality.
When I was training for my first half marathon, my very first run was a two-mile out and back course with a training group. When it was over, I was exhausted. I was basically panting and it was difficult to breathe during the run. I mentioned it to one of the couches, and he told me to slow down. On some hidden level, I knew that. One of my uncles ran marathons and had told me that I should try to run at a pace where I could carry on a conversation. The coach and my uncle were absolutely right. Slow down. But I didn't want to.
I did end up heeding the coach's advice and slowing my runs down. Not surprising, they became much more bearable, even enjoyable. I don't know how many miles I've logged in five years of running, but I'd like to think I've learned a lot in that time. Sometimes I think I should have taken it all slower. That I should have taken my time becoming familiar with the shorter races I've done before advancing to the next distance. Maybe I wouldn't be injured right now. I can't help but think that this injury has been simmering under the surface for years and has just now reached its boiling point.
What would I do if I could go back and do it all over again? In a way, I am back at the beginning. A new runner starting out, logging a couple miles here and there. It's like that movie Never Been Kissed. What would a part of my past be like if I could go back to it now and do it again? What changes could I make and how would they affect the person I am now? Five years ago, I didn't know anything about running—the mechanics, the history, training strategies, the events. Now, I'm starting fresh and loaded with all this knowledge. Can I use it become the kind of runner I want to be?