Monday, March 25, 2013

Running saved my life

Lisa reminded me of why I love running.  And I don't just mean because of the positive health benefits although managing my weight and blood pressure were the reasons I started running in the first place.  No, beyond the physical, running saved my life during those dark periods in my life when it looked as if I would never get through the 'Life Challenges'.  Discipline, mental toughness, "Just do it' are all part of the running experience.  In running as in life, the only way to succeed is to "Just keep moving!"  And running saved my life again recently.

I was drawn to this train of thought after a particularly intense conversation with a fellow runner this past weekend.  She mentioned that beyond the health benefits, one of the reasons she joined a running group was that it gave her the motivation and inspiration to keep going through a particularly difficult time in her life.  Her words spoke to me.  The past couple of years have been particularly challenging.  I've only make it through because I've kept running.  Not running scares the crap out of me!

First it was the 'Age Thing'.  It's taken a while but I've finally accepting that I really am 55.  Now when I see myself in pictures I don't wince at the image of the 'Old Guy'.  Well, not much anyway.

Then there's been the challenge of transitioning to career #3.  "Morales the Recruiter" has been a natural transition and I wish I had started sooner.  I am not a patient person though so when the business hasn't progressed as fast as I've wanted it to, I've been frustrated.  Every day though I remind myself that as long as I keep moving I'm a winner.

Then I had the ultimate scare with the broken foot last September:  what if I can never run again?  Seemed real at the time but I kept at it.  I swam for 3 months then as soon as I could I started walking.  Now that I'm back to running 3 - 4 days each week I can't believe how silly the thought of not running was.  I'm looking forward to my first race, the Sporting Life 10K on May 12.  I'll be running it with two of my boys.  They'll leave me in their dust but I'll be in the race.

"Just keep moving!"  I know it sounds cliche and maybe it is.  I am sure though that as long as I keep moving life with be OK!  Thanks for the reminder Lisa.

Until next time...
ThatRunninGuy
++++++++++

I'm raising funds for the Heart & Stroke Foundation in 2013.  My goal is to raise $2,000 by December 31.  My planned races in 2013 include:

  1. The Sporting Life 10K, May 12
  2. The Toronto Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront 1/2 Marathon, October 20
  3. The Reggae Marathon, December 7.  
Please join me on Facebook at Run for Heart.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Running in the Dark

I don't like Daylight Savings Time.  "Spring ahead, fall back".  I can never get it right.  Like most others, I sleep terribly for a couple of days after the bi-annual time change. Last weekend we had the Spring Ritual of 'spring ahead' when we moved the clocks ahead. I was a marketing guy so I professionally appreciate the catchy description.  But it doesn't mask the fact that after a all too brief few weeks of early morning runs in the soft morning light, I'm back to running in the dark.

There is some irony to me running in the dark as I start regular running again after recovering from my foot injury.  That's how I started running many years ago (How it Started).  But I'm not hiding from anyone now and like exchanging the 'Runner's Hand Flip' with other runners I meet.  It's easier to do that when we can see each other.

I also hate being super vigilant in pre-dawn runs with vehicles.  I always run facing traffic and mostly stay on the sidewalks.  There is one stretch of road without sidewalks and even with the clearly delineated Bike Lane, cars and especially SUV's seem oblivious.  And I have my Running Room Reflective Gear!

There is only one day of the year when running in the dark is actually fabulous:  The first Saturday of December for the annual running of the Reggae Marathon. This year it's on December 7 and it will be my 5th consecutive time in Negril, Jamaica.  The drumming, the torch lights, the crowds...all anxious to get started promptly at 5:15 am.  And come to think of it, little Jamaica doesn't observe Daylight Savings Time!

Until next time...
ThatRunninGuy
++++++++++

I'm raising funds for the Heart & Stroke Foundation in 2013.  My goal is to raise $2,000 by December 31.  My planned races in 2013 include:

  1. The Sporting Life 10K, May 12
  2. The Toronto Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront 1/2 Marathon, October 20
  3. The Reggae Marathon, December 7.  
Please join me on Facebook at Run for Heart.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

What do you think about when you run?


Running for me is therapy.  As much as running keeps my weight in check and my blood pressure normal, I live for those times when my mind goes totally free.  Those days and experiences keep me running even when my spirit is weak.

Having said that, I've also found that while running while my mind is free, lots of things cross my mind.  It's a cliche I know but I do solve all my problems while running.  Sometimes I think about work-related challenges, other times it's family.  Always it's a personal conversation in my head with no critics or judge.

So what do I think about while running?  Here are some of the recurring topics:
  1. What the hell am I doing with my life?  I've just hit the double nickle, 55 and while running recently this has been a recurring theme: What I've done so far and what else I can do.  Other than the odd 'Mistake' earlier in my life, I have generally been blessed with a fantastic life.  Yes there have been setbacks but I've enjoyed great kids, fabulous wife, supportive family and friends.  But what's next...
  2. Will this be the day I no longer run?  Over the past 3 years I've had some running injuries that for the first time in my 30 years of running have seriously threatened my ability to keep running.  I like cycling, am a strong swimmer but I hate the thought of not running.
  3. Do I look like a runner?  True confession:  I cannot pass a window or glass store-front and not sneak a look at my form.  Most times I am disappointed...it looks like I'm shuffling not running.  The feeling passes quickly though...I am running!
  4. What's my next pair of running shoes?  I am immediately disenchanted with my running shoes after my first run in a new pair.  Talk about short-term love!  I've had more success with the Puma Faas 500's that I ran in for a couple of years but generally I am always looking at new running shoes.  Sally hates it that I can't pass a store selling running shoes without stopping in.  Wait...make that any store selling shoes!
  5. If I stop during a run was it a good run?  Traffic lights and stop lights don't count.  Most times because I'm running so early in the morning when traffic is light I don't stop.  Shhh...don't tell anyone.
That's it, that's all.  Truthfully though, I'm never sure what will pop into my mind when I head out for a run.  That's why I run.

Until next time...
ThatRunninGuy

++++++++++

I'm raising funds for the Heart & Stroke Foundation in 2013.  My goal is to raise $2,000 by December 31.  My planned races in 2013 include:

  1. The Sporting Life 10K, May 12
  2. The Toronto Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront 1/2 Marathon, October 20
  3. The Reggae Marathon, December 7.  
Please join me on Facebook at Run for Heart.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

The Runner's Prayer


My sister Ginette sent me this on my 55th birthday last Friday and I was moved to share it.  A prayer for runners and a mention in the Bible!
O Lord, may I never just look as if I’m in the race – the race you have set before me.Instead, let me be running with all my heart. And may I never allow myself to be detoured by the difficulties of life. Amen 
“Let us run with endurance the race God has set before us.”   Hebrews 12:1
The photo above features me with Larry Savitch on the left and Dan Cumming on the right.  It was taken after we completed our various Reggae Marathon events last December in Jamaica.  Runners...Friends...Uncomplicated.  I pray for more friends like that.

Until next time...
ThatRunninGuy

++++++++++

I'm raising funds for the Heart & Stroke Foundation in 2013.  My goal is to raise $2,000 by December 31.  My planned races in 2013 include:

  1. The Sporting Life 10K, May 12
  2. The Toronto Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront 1/2 Marathon, October 20
  3. The Reggae Marathon, December 7.  
Please join me on Facebook at Run for Heart.

Contact Me Now

Name

Email *

Message *