Just. Keep. Going.
So, I got through my back to back runs well, and I was surprised that the second offering yesterday, where the hills are longer and at the end of the circuit (I did the same route, both ways round), was quicker than the first. Is this fitness in action? I’ll take it.
Of course, on the 6.5 mile route, there were twinges. Thankfully they were nothing to do with hips or tibiae, but those blisters that I mentioned yesterday. I have yet to perform the operation required on myself. It’s today’s major priority. Great, a rest day and I have to somehow save my feet.
Anyway, they weren’t a huge bother, but as I ran I thought to myself, Laura, this is only 6.5 miles. This is true. If these bad boys start playing up half way up a volcano, I am sure my operating equipment will come out of my camel pack sooner than I am currently putting off!
What makes people continue, even through the pain? Maria wrote yesterday about all the things pouring through her mind as to her heavy legs, but which, by occupying herself with those same questioning thoughts, she got to the end of the 8 miles. She did it.
That’s the point. Each step, while sometimes a struggle, gets made. Enough of those small steps and great things happen. Marathons get finished; businesses get built; relationships get saved; progress gets made.
On my first of the back to back runs, I saw an old man running round the common. He must have been nearing 70. He was wearing a proper running vest, sparkling running shoes and a neon yellow headband. He immediately became my hero. I caught up with him and as I did so, I realised he was running slower than I could walk backwards… in mud… wearing 6-inch heels.
I stayed behind him 20 seconds or so just to make sure he was running. He was. Ever so slowly, but he was running.
As I overtook him, he became even more of a hero.
We so often judge people who are faster, stronger, younger, fitter and more beautiful as somehow better. We don’t judge those who come 17th, or 223rd, or last in the same vein. They still arrived. They still got there. It was probably harder and they did the same thing.
They just did it slower. I don’t know how long it takes that old man to run around Ealing Common. It could take all day.
But he does it.