12 miles. I dropped Lacey off at home and was secretly hoping to end my run there. I was tired. I didn't want to trudge back home. It is all hills back. And ONE very terrible hill.
My ankle was still sore from my 16 miler on Thursday, I rolled it pretty bad at mile 6. I had several more excuses to have Lacey just drive me home.
But I had ONE BIG reason I needed to RUN...my 100K.
I had to be stronger than my excuses.
I came down E. Holly rd 30 seconds too fast. I thought maybe I could hold this pace until I hit that last hill to my house.
There she was a half-a-mile ahead of me.
"I can do this." I tried to convince myself. The sun was so warm on my skin. Without a cloud in the sky, the gentle breeze kept my temperature down. Everything really was ideal.
It was daunting looking up at her.
The music was loud in my ears, as I replayed America's Sweetheart by Elle King. The song is tough. The lyrics were raging. I felt my hands clenched.
"I CAN DO THIS, I CAN FREAKING do this." I said out loud."
Everything worth anything was laid out before me. "I GOT THIS" I screamed louder.
I licked my lips, swallowed hard and dug in heading right for that beast at the end of a 14 mile run.
"LET'S GO, LET'S GO ANITA."
"GET UP THE HILL!!!"
It burned, my heart was beating out of my chest.
The more it hurt, the more I picked my legs up and moved my arm. I looked at the top of the hill with vengeance. I wanted nothing more than to beat the hell out of the hill. I was not going to have it the other way around.
My whole body turned cold. I had goosebumps from head to toe.
"EVERYTHING, COME ON, GET IT." I screamed not caring who heard me.
I started to laugh, that crazy Jack Nicholson laugh, as I approached the top.
I flung my arm in the air as I conquered the top. "YES!!!" Smiling with victory, I felt the strongest I had the entire 14 mile run.
One of the great things about running is there is always an adventure. I do not like to be married to my watch on long runs. If I see something worthy of a second glance, I want to stop and enjoy it. My running partners know this is something I do.
Today, was one of those days. Lacey and I ran Rattalee Lk Rd. From rustic barns to acres and acres of wet lands. We stumbled on a small park and decided to run through it. It was more of a Hike/horse kind of a trail. But it was fun running that mile through it. It was also our slowest mile!
Life is fragile. Time is not as endless as we think. Everyday is a gift. There is so much life to live. So much to see, feel, smell, experience.
When I run, I love taking a deep breath of the fresh air. Unconsciously, I reach my hands out to touch the grass. My eyes bounce off one scene and look for another. I get giddy like a toddler, when I see a wild turkey, a stoic sand crane or graceful deer dancing across the field.
I feel every breeze, and embrace the warmth of the sun on my bare skin.
It is LIFE. It is living. It is going out not knowing what each run will hold. Running in Faith.
Embracing Each day God has given you. And not taking a single moment for granted.