Wednesday, October 7, 2009


For so many years of my life I haven't believed I could be a runner. It was something beyond "it's just not in me" to something I fundamentally believed inside of myself. Excuses, like vultures, circled around it. name it.

Then I started running. And with time I've come to understand that I can be a runner.

I don't go far. I don't go fast. But I run. Does it still count?

Last month on NPR I heard an author talking about his new book - on running. I had kids running around my feet so I could not really pay much attention but I did catch the title:

I placed a hold at the library - and for the last week have been devoring this book whenever I can sneak in time. It is a phenomenal book full of tales from running present to past. The main theme of the book - we were born to run

The author, Christopher McDougall, centers the tale around his glimpse into the ultramarathon running world, especially that of the Tarahumara in Mexico.

It has given me such food for thought. It has renewed my passion to continue this sport. And it gives me power.

Last night my little family of four ventured out on our second "family run night". RunMan usually runs at night and I typically run in the morning - that way we both get our run time in without missing out on other activities. Last Tuesday we went for a run together at night and agreed we needed to make it a habit. At about mile 1.5 I was tired. Mostly because I was dreading another 1.5 miles back. RunMan had to do four miles that night so I slowed down and flipped around - pushing the boys in the jogger that we call a "baler". (think hay baler...that is where the boys got the name)

The boys kept taking turns hopping in and out for short bouts of running. When RunMan caught up with us RunKid, my five year-old, gladly hopped out and took off with him. SwimKid, my three year-old who is a natural born swimmer, was content to stay in the baler.

Their energy and excitement helped me forget the last 1.5 miles and we made it home.

But last night? Last night was different. Again RunMan needed to do 4 miles. This time I didn't hesitate to join him. All because of one thing I read in the book that Dr. Dennis Bramble (go Utes!) said:

"Just move your legs. Because if you don't think you were born to run, you're not only denying history. You're denying who you are."

I started my run with that mantra. And I finished my first four-miler feeling like I had at least another one in me. The kids both ran about a mile each, following either their Dad or I as we pounded down the pavement.

As I ran, hand in hand with my children, I realized what a powerful event had occurred. For the boys as well - to see their parents running at night, laughing with each other, speeding up and slowing down to try and keep pace (RunMan and I run completely different natural speeds) with each other. They ran their best too. Always asking how many meters or miles they had run.

I walked in my house with my husband, my kids, and myself. Knowing exactly who I am. A runner.


Christina said...

Isn't it wonderful being a runner? That is a great quote about denying history.