Sunday, December 12, 2010

Running Into the Storm

It's that time of year when the daylight and your motivation seem to race away from you together in the late afternoon. If you're a morning runner it seems like it will take the Sun all day to warm up the land around you and your bed feels like you're on a beach in Hawaii. I went out for a 20 miler today. My goal was to take it really easy for the first half and then power back the second. This particular run turned into quite an interesting and introspective trot around the coastal trails of San Francisco. It became a reflection of something larger, Winter Training. This is the time of year when you build up your mental strength. Mother Nature challenges you and shows you how strong she is but she also reminds you how your lives intertwine. I had some major ups and downs on today's run... at times i felt like I was proceeding painfully slow, at other times my knees ached and I wanted to stop and walk, and at other times I questioned running all together and thought that maybe I should I just stick to racing shorter distances (I just registered for the American River 50 Miler 4/9/11). However, like getting dressed and motivating yourself out the door for a run in a storm or running when it is so cold out that you have 4 inch "snotsicles" on your nose and look like a walrus, the "lows" gave way to the highs which reminded me why I am a runner. I closed out the run with my initial intention of the run, finishing strong with two and half 7:30 miles (I was averaging about 9 the first half and 8:30/45 the second half.) I finished the run with no aches or pains and a genuine smile on my face. Life is good.