Posts Tagged ‘runner’s high’

  There it is! The first 5K Since December of 2010… and the 2nd race post-ankle surgery. Words cannot begin to explain how amazing it feels to FINALLY feel great running again. My ankle has been a little swollen here and there but other than that no problems with my left foot. On the other hand, there have been several evenings where I’ve slept with 4 or 5 ice packs to try to relax my knees, my tail bone, and my back. But regardless of the pills and the pain, I DON’T CARE! To be in a race and be able to run hills for 3.1 miles at an 11:20/min pace is indescribable. I forgot (albeit, momentarily) how great it feels to run.

Andrew so graciously got up early on Sunday (after being up early on Saturday too!) and drove me to the race location (in DC). He brought along Franklin and they weren’t allowed in the cemetery but he got up early and drove me there anyway! I checked in and hung around with the boys until it drew close to start time. We parted ways and I thought, ugh, how am I going to do this. I walked through the gates and into a mess of people- none of whom I knew. I started thinking why am I doing this? Maybe this isn’t for me anymore… maybe I need to find something else, some other line of fitness. That’s when it happened. The man on the speaker started talking about the history of the cemetery and the race. I stretched and looked up at the absolutely gorgeous weather (sunny and 60s). I looked around and heard people laughing and smiling and stretching and I felt the bodies press up against me as everyone crowded the start line. Right there. That instant. Knowing that about 1,000 people had traveled by foot, bike, car, and metro to a cemetery in Southeast DC at 8:00AM on a Sunday morning… JUST TO RUN a 3.1 mile route with a bunch of complete strangers. That right there is why I run. That is why I have struggled through ankle surgery and weight gain and now trying to make it through weight loss. Because of the feeling I get surrounded by countless people I’ve never met and may never see again… just to go for a run. We are a special breed, we runners. We’d put up with anything- sleet, rain, snow (I’ve been there), sun, clouds, crowds, over-flowing portapotties, rotten bananas, cold pretzels, water, gatorade, gels…not to mention aches, pains, sprains, fractures, sweat, tears, and screams just for the thrill of crossing a finish line.

One of the greatest things about running is that even though there is competition going on, everyone’s on the same team. After you cross the finish line, you shake hands, give hugs, talk about what you did differently that cut a second or two off your time… and the greatest part? After the race, the people who were faster than you, they stick around, they walk down the path you’re still struggling to make your way up and they cheer for you. They clap, the yell, they motivate– even if they beat your pace by 6 minutes/mile, they are your equal. They get it and they get that you get it. And for the amount of time it takes to complete the race, everything in the world is right. There is nothing that could bring you down. Not one thing.

And that my friends, is the runner’s high.