After the 2010 Philadelphia Marathon I promised to never run again. Not just another marathon, or long run, but even if I was chased by a bear.
For the most part I’ve managed to keep my word in the three years since. Sure, I cheated here and there in Tampa, taking a few brief leisurely runs along Bayshore, but they were never serious. It was merely a fling.
But I started running again last Friday. Immediately after I wrote my whole, “hey, I’m writing again” post. Which – considering how the two have been tied in the past – is probably not a coincidence, though I won’t pretend to understand the correlation.
Thinking back, I’m not even entirely sure why I stopped.
Yes, I was tired. And towards the end there, it really did take up a lot of time. Plus there was the decision to run on a wonky knee, since I had already trained too much to not run it, and, hell, I’m young and stupid and modern medicine will have a solution for my cartilage-less right knee in twenty years. And if it doesn’t, well that’s future Justin’s problem.
But I’m afraid I tainted my own opinion on running with my incessant need to downplay even the most minor of accomplishments. “The marathon? Oh, it’s not nearly as big of a deal as you’d think.” What a prick, right?
Or – I don’t know – perhaps I was just in the quitting mode. I did, after all, quit on my home state of Delaware a week after the marathon, spontaneously moving a thousand miles away.
But despite whatever reason I manufactured to stop running three years ago, I’m back. And it’s actually kind of great.
Not my performance, of course. I can only string together three ten-minute-miles. But I’m enjoying it. I can’t complain about the scenery – through the marina and up to Crissy Field (world famous for it’s appearance in the hacky sack portion of Nintendo’s seminal “California Games”).
And I have the occasion to listen to all my running music. I can escape from the old sad bastard tracks that, let’s face it, I love, but I could use a bit of time apart from now and again.
So I’m making playlists with Hellogoodbye, fun., Bishop Allen, Tullycraft …
Plus – and I really don’t know how I forgot about this – running makes you feel awesome. It does. It releases endorphins into the brain, almost like my body doesn’t want to spend the evening lying in bed staring at a laptop screen.
And so I’m four runs into my comeback, with eyes on running at least the 10K at the Berkeley Marathon in ten weeks.
Not that a 10K is a big deal or anything.