Week nine of marathon training was a fall back week – Only 13 miles were on my training plan. It was a treat. After 16 last weekend, my body was looking for a comfortable run. It wanted 13 easy miles. (and I’m still seriously baffled that I’m finally into the stretch of my training were 13 miles is only and easy).
The cherry on top of my 13 mile treat: I was joined on my run by a friend I haven’t seen in over a decade. We went to high school together, we worked together at the Gap (although we both forgot! ha!), and then we went our separate ways. She came home for the holidays and was more than willing to run 13 miles with me…
…in the POURING rain. In crazy wind. Through some crazy muddy trails. And along a beach that didn’t exist because it was high tide.
There really is only one word to describe the 13 miles. It was a treat. I haven’t had that much fun running in a long time. It was fabulous to catch up. Conversation flowed freely. It was great to have someone to run with who you connect with on so many levels. My one and only new year’s resolution is to openly share myself more (blog post coming soon). Over the course of the 13 miles, it was so nice to not shy away from conversation. It was so nice to feel comfortable sharing. Over the course of those 13 miles, a true deep friendship was formed. The decade of missed years disappeared.
Another added bonus to the run: she is a faster runner than me. Somehow she made running 9 minute miles (on the road) feel comfortable and easy.
And another bonus (did I mention this run was a treat?): the trails were beautiful. It was raining and gray and foggy. There were big mud puddles to splash through. I lead us through my favorite loop. As we headed down the sand dunes towards the isolated beach, we quickly learned it was high tide. There was no beach. We had to create our own path through trees and the small strip of sand. It felt like being a child and tossing all cares aside.
As we finished up our 13.5 mile run (because it was way to cold, wet, and windy to walk back to the car), we ran our last few miles along the boardwalk. We didn’t see a single person. That’s when I realized why that run and running in general mean so much to me.
Nothing matters except for enjoying the moment.
Yesterday’s run could have been a recipe for disaster: running with someone I haven’t seen in ages, horrible weather, flooded trails. Instead it will make it to my lists of favorite runs for a long time. All of those elements made me stay present. They insisted that I enjoy the moment as it was happening. Nothing else mattered. Not pace. Not the mileage on my garmin. Not the missed years of friendship. Not the rain. We just ran.
13.58 miles in 2:26:07
Thank you Lauren for an amazing run, and for the wonderful reminder to enjoy each moment.