Alarm clock jangles in my ear: 5am.
<stretch, gaze out the window…>
Thinks: It’s a gorgeous day. Let’s get ‘er done.
<rustles Scott awake –notorious for “not hearing” the alarm clock go off>
<grabs running gear from the bureau, all laid out from the night prior for added motivation, changes quickly. Brushes teeth. Puts contacts in. Straps on patella straps and double-knots sneakers. Feed kitties. Waits for Scott…he’s a little slower in the morning than me.>
Thinks: ok, 6.5 miles today. That’s just over an hour. Totally doable.
We walk down our street and up the hill to our usual starting point. Give eachother a “kiss for luck” like we do before every single run. Race day. Training run day. Casual “fun” run. Whenever. We never forget it. I think it makes all the difference. 😉
Off we go. My legs aren’t happy right away – they take about a half mile to adjust from dead-asleep slumber to up-and-at-em-running-down-the-street mode. <shocking, I know>
But before we know it, we’re one mile in and feeling good. Our 6.5 mile route takes us by the river and into some great little neighborhoods with lots of scenery.
<gazes around and thinks: where are the bunnies today? Sleeping on me?>
As we continue on our way, Scott quickens his pace – he likes to run just ahead of me to keep me from slowing into my usual comfortable pace which is slower than I can run, it’s a pace I tend to stick myself into because, well – it’s comfortable. So even though I’d rather he be by my side, having him right ahead of me pushes me to pick up the pace. Or else he’ll just say “suck it up, Sally – get moving!” Which also works wonders. 😉
Before I know it, we’ve rounded the bend and made our way up the hill which leads us back around towards ‘home.’
Thinks: 2 miles left, wow that went fast.
I notice my knee bugging me a little bit so I pay closer attention to my hips, to make sure they are preventing my knees from turning in (hello IT band syndrome two summers ago!). Knees feel better after I adjust. <phew>
<gazes around at the scenery – noticing the birds and squirrels scurrying around, also seeing more life emerging from the houses in the neighborhood. *loves running as the world slumbers*>
I’ve found, more often than not, that my mind wanders a lot when I run, not on anything specific, just lots of little mini-thoughts mixed with moments of quiet. Not “thinking” per se, just moving along our path, up the hills, down the hills, around the corner.
To me, this is running nirvana – something I have worked for years to get to. And sure, we can and should work on our running ability every single day (intervals, hill repeats, tempo runs, etc.). But keeping that ‘nirvana’ feeling alive is another story entirely. It is something to be embraced and appreciated as it can disappear just as quickly as it arrives. It can be fleeting and very hard to get back. My sister is facing this right now. And I feel for her. I SO want her to find her running nirvana moment. I know she will get there, she just has to have faith. I firmly believe that.
In the meantime, I am enjoying my own nirvana moment – as a runner. Who was totally run-spired to blog this out after my run on Wednesday morning.