Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Mile Marker 1.5

Running is such a simple thing. Toddlers do it with complete abandon in the soft green grass of spring. Children run and chase each other, giving no thought to the required exertion, squealing with delight in games of tag. Running seems like such a simple function. At least, it should be simple. I see it all the time. Runners, gliding effortlessly down the street, floating past as their feet seem barely to touch the ground. Runners, all of them slender and leggy, their muscles defined and rippling with each stride. Despite my past experiences as an enthusiastic runner, sometimes when I see them now I growl, "Hmph. Show off." And, my dear husband, ever empathetic with my frustration, responds, "Forget that . . . do you ever see one of them smile?" He's convinced that running and smiling are incongruous.

Regardless, my scornful remarks are borne from jealousy, and I'm the first to say so. I recall vividly the sense of accomplishment, the feeling of empowerment that comes with covering mile after mile, fueled by nothing but determination. I recall falling asleep at night in excited anticipation of the next day's run. "No dead ends," I used to claim confidently, observing that with running as one's chosen method of fitness, there were very few obstacles in the way of success.

That was my perspective before a diagnosis of compartment syndrome and corrective surgery on both legs. It also was before cardiovascular surgery, and for sure, it was several years before reaching the age of 53. Now, I measure success in pain-free minutes, and progress in portions of a mile. I don't glide effortlessly, as the folks I watch seem to do. On the contrary, I pound, and every step seems to reverberate from my toes to my eyebrows.

Still, though progress is slow, though I am slow, I've been training for several weeks now. And, I'm happy to report that this week, I successfully managed 1.5 miles on the treadmill! It's not the golden 3.1, nor even 3 miles, but it IS half way! With any luck, I'll reach 2 miles by the end of January, then progress to training outside, where pounding away on the asphalt streets will present new challenges.

So, for all of our Wounded Warriors, though no one can ever fill their shoes, I'll run my next mile-and-a-half hoping for a fraction of the courage needed to wear them....


  1. YAY! Keep up the good work... you're doing a great job! And, you've now been "pimped" on my blog, so you better keep posting, Lady! LOL

  2. Oh, and I like Jay's theory! lol


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