Sunday, November 14, 2010

Run Like a Mother

November 13, 2010 - 4:45 a.m. and heading to Richmond for the race!
I guess you could say I dabble in running. I started about 10 months ago - training first for a 10k in Richmond, followed by the 10 miler, and then a break for summer. In August, I signed up for my first half marathon and started training again...

Yesterday, I ran the 13.1 miles. My goal was to run it in about 2 hours 2 minutes or so. My official time was 1:57:50 - I ran sub-9 minute miles until the very end, when I sprinted across the finish line. Success!!

While I was training for this half marathon, I was trying to scope out some new running gear. I'd seen some pretty awesome slogans and various gizmos and contraptions on all the "real" runners in previous races, and I was in the market for some new stuff. My favorite slogans and sayings were those about mom runners, and one that really grabbed my attention was "Run like a Mother."

I wondered, do I run like a mother? (Am I certain that's even a compliment?) So I started to ponder it more deeply.....

Mothers are among the strongest people I know.... yeah, runners are pretty tough, too.

Mothers can evoke a certain fierceness about them, i.e. the "mama bear" instinct that comes out when we're guarding our beloved children. Runners are pretty fierce.

Most moms I know are determined, hard-working, goal-oriented. That sums up running quite nicely, too.

Being a mother is empowering. The best example, in my own experience, was giving birth to three amazing human beings. Running is empowering, too, with each mile reached and each goal achieved.

The best moms I know always allot themselves plenty of "Me" time. Running is my "me" time. I heard it described on NPR as "full body meditation," and indeed, that's what running has become to me - a time to reflect, contemplate, ponder, think deeply, and simultaneously rid myself of the stresses, frustrations, sadness, and anger I feel.

When I "hit the wall" that is infamous among runners, I call upon my reserves - those times when I've been a strong mama. I think about those times, visualize them, draw strength from what I have done powerfully and well in the past - all times when I've been a mama.

Moms want their kids to be proud of them. Running is one way I hope to make them proud.

Running is tough. Being a mom is the toughest job I'll ever know.

So..... Do I run like a mother?
You bet I do.

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