Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Hill – A Follow Up

On May 24th I wrote a posting called “The Hill”, which was dedicated to me feeling sorry for myself as I bitched and complained about how difficult it was to adapt to jogging in the Virgin Islands after being here only 11 days.  If you didn’t read that post, then I recommend you take a look at it prior to reading this posting so you have a frame of reference.  However, a simple recap of that posting is me agonizing over how hard it was to run in the heat, the hills and the blazing sun. 

Looking back, it seems silly for me to have wanted to quit running after only 11 short days of being on the island.  After all, I had hardly given it a chance, yet I was convinced that I was done with jogging - the conditions were too extreme.  However, I quickly realized that without my main form of exercise, I found it difficult to sleep, so I was often very tired and moody.  After several weeks of tolerating this, my boyfriend suggested that I try running once again, and convinced me to do so by starting with a short run. 
Since nobody can motivate me more than my boyfriend and a new playlist on my iPod, I decided to suck it up and go with him on a short, but difficult jog.  I won’t sugar coat this - that first run after several weeks off hurt like hell.  I’m not even sure I made it all the way without stopping to catch my breath countless times.  Keep in mind that a year before, I ran a half marathon at a 8:26/mile pace with a stress fracture in my femur, so I’m used to moving at a decent pace, running long distances and dealing with pain.  Yet, this 2 miler felt like I was running in a steam room, with a 100 pound weight on my chest, after smoking an entire pack of cigarettes the night before.  What had become of me - ugh.   

However, somehow I managed to go on another run a few days later, and I continued to stick with it.  I’m happy to say that one slow-moving, grueling run at a time I have lengthened my courses and, to keep my interest I’ve found different routes with even more hills.  Still, my attitude isn’t great right afterwards.  Almost every time I'm finished, I find myself saying things like, ‘brutal’, ‘I’m done with running ’ and, my personal favorite, ‘kill me now’.  And, I often yearn for a cool, crisp and flat autumn run up in Chicago.  So, I’m unclear as to why I continue with this self-masochistic behavior. 
Of course, I understand the obvious benefits of this type of exercise.  It does help me sleep, and I feel accomplished and more relaxed throughout the day.  I feel fit (my ass is, indeed, firmer!) and running boosts my confidence.  It also keeps me in shape for the other physical things I enjoy doing.  But, when most people experience such pain, they don’t go back for more – especially when the positive effects aren’t immediate.  I don’t get it.
As I write this post I, like you probably, really am not sure what the point is – truly a sign of a terrible posting and an ammatuer writer.  I guess what I’m trying to say is that while I have a love/hate relationship with running, it is a passion that I’ve had for most of my life.  Some of my best, most proud moments and memories have been made exploring my surroundings and my physical potential through the sport of running.  With this in mind, I find it disappointing that I was so apt to quickly quit on something that had brought me such gratification for so long.  Another life lesson, I suppose.  And, without this blog I never would have realized how inpatient I was with the situation.  So, I guess I’ll keep running, and I’ll keep writing.  Hopefully, you’ll keep reading.  
Finishing my last half marathon.

No comments:

Post a Comment