Monday, June 15, 2009

Ever notice?

Running aint pretty. I know some of you may disagree with me. You're thinking of the smooth paced runner who looks like they're floating on the surface of the pavement. Or maybe you're thinking of the great bodies that grace the covers of running magazines. I am not that runner. I am the hair filled and dripping with sweat, knees knocking together, ankles scraping the opposite calf, gasping for oxygen, looks like they might trip themselves (oh wait, I've done that) kind of runner. My thighs don't look like I run. My calves might a little, maybe it just hasn't moved up the line yet. But that's not what I'm talking about.
I'm talking about the after effects of running. Not just the sweaty, stinky clothes that you have to peel off. (My husband asked me if I was going to have to cut my clothes off a couple of weeks ago...uh hum...I did not.) Not the limping around like you're a cripple or laying with ice on your knees either. I'm talking pure vanity here. Running has not been kind to me. And I have the tan lines to prove it. It's not just my shirt lines or my short lines that look ridiculous in a swimming suit (not that I've been brave enough to even put one on yet this "summer") but it's the shoe line that really gets me. I was in my cute skirt walking over to church in my cute little sandals when I look down to admire my toenails that are so cute and I get a glimpse of my lovely tan line. Not so cute. I might as well have been wearing my running shoes with my cute little skirt. I looked ridiculous. I know what you're thinking. Just sit out in the sun with your shoes off for a few hours and problem solved. O.k. maybe. But this is what really gets me. I have a tan mustache. Yep. I get it every year. For some dumb reason I tan right above my lip darker than anywhere else on my face. I even started this spring by putting sunscreen ONLY above my lip. Didn't help. I still got it. I try to use cover up under my make up on my upper lip. But it eventually wears off. I am totally aware of how vain this is and how unimportant it is in the scheme of the universe. But still. A tan mustache? Come on!
Now before you think that I've totally lost it...I haven't. You see I know I'm going to get these crazy tan lines and I still choose to run. Guess I don't care as much about my appearance as I thought. Truthfully, I am so grateful to be able to run. When you're injured you really get grateful and I'm trying to remember even though I'm not. The ability to run is something that should never be taken for granted. It might not always be fun. It might be hard. There might be setbacks and progress may not always be what we want it to be. But the simple motion of putting one foot in front of the other is a blessing. Running doesn't take any special talent. There's not too much coordination involved. Just one foot in front of the other. But what a blessing. So many are not able to do that simple motion. I'm so grateful for the chance to experience the exhilaration of feeling the pavement beneath my feet and the motion of moving forward. I really love to run.

Last week:
Tues. June 9th- 5 1/2 miles hills
Wed. June 10th- 6 1/2 miles fast
Fri. June 12th- 6 1/2 miles fast
Sat. June 13th- 8 1/3 miles
Taper time!
Mon. June 15th- 3 miles
Wed. June 17th- 2 miles


Mel said...

ha ha. I always have racoon eyes because i don't tan under my eyes:) Ya, I would love to be the graceful runner but its just not happening here and then I realize how good it feels to just be able TO run at all.

Your training had been really aggressive. I'm second guessing my ability to do this relay well. I hope I don't let everybody down. See you Friday!

Jen said...

Mel, I get those raccoon eyes too! And you won't let anyone down! You're still way faster than me and besides, we're doing it for fun-right? If not, I'm on the wrong team!

Michael said...

Jen, Those tan lines are badges of an active person, a person who knows and appreciates the preciousness of life. We run for many, many reason, but mostly we run as an affirmation of life. We run because we can.

Jen, good luck to you in the Wasatch Back run. This will be on of those amazing experiences that life sometimes throws our way. Savor it. Dance across the finish. It is indeed a good day to be alive.


Mammasita said...

Jen, you don't know me but could you please contact me at and give me your email or phone number? I am not trying to sell anything and I'm not a stalker. I would like to talk to you about your running.
Thank you, Robin (female)
P.S. I ran the Wasatch Back for the first time this weekend. Coolest race ever!!! Hope you had a great time.