Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Hello treadmill, my old friend. I've got to run on you again.

Tis the season of post-marathon blues. I should have known it would hit a bit harder this year, given the momentum I had driving me through this last race, only to have final papers to turn in and a trip back home to begin my holiday season.

I'm in Tahoe-- a layover of days before I descend into Smith Valley-- watching as the world turns a dismal gray with snow. 


Snow hiding the evergreen tree line. Snow covering every conceivable place to run. Cold, frigid snow.

I'm brought back to last year about this time when I re-started my running career on a treadmill in the local gym. The memory came back because I stepped on that very treadmill today with considerably more mileage on my legs and many more memories. I have so much to be thankful for... mostly not having to run on a treadmill for the entire winter season ahead of me! 

It's hard for me not to get depressed this time of year. And even harder now that I'm returning "home"-- the places I struggled to run in once. Being in the bay has spoiled me. Never once in this training cycle did I feel sub-freezing air on my skin. Flurries in my eyes and hair. Puddles, maybe, but it's OK to get wet once in a while. :)

It hasn't been all dismal-doom, however. We put up a tree, hung our decorations. Jacques, the cat, took part, donning a Santa hat (OK, I helped with that a little :) ) but not minding so much. 

And though things are going well-- no post-race injury to speak of-- I can't help but worry about the years and miles to come. Despite the holidays, which mean time to spend with my family (which I haven't seen since August before I left for Saint Mary's College), this slight glumness on my part has me worried: what happens when this running life is over? Maybe by then I will be more mature and ready to handle life on its own without this crutch of constant motion.

I suppose it's premature to think of that now-- to worry about possibilities that are not yet realities. I am so grateful for what I have achieved and for what lies immediately ahead: a visit to my family, a race in February and all the miles to get me there.

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