A few weeks ago I went out for an 8 mile run. I was ill prepared and not thinking I was going to make it. But, turns out, I did GREAT. I wouldn’t so much call it a run, or even a jog, but maybe a trot. A jaunt, if you will. I was kicking it. Man, was I in a good mood when I got back.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am a runner. I am not a small woman. In fact, the closer I get to 40, the wider my butt gets. And my waist. And my butt. But still, this is something I do. And I ain’t lying, yo. Check me out:
My medal from my half marathon last fall.
My first Mudathlon.
My second Mudathlon.
Me rocking some underboob sweat after a 10-mile.
Me looking cute as Jim sucks in and Laura inexplicably pretends her banana is a phone.
Look, here’s me running the in the outfield after a Joliet Slammers game in a skirt!
SEE. I AM AN ATHLETE.
In a few days, I am running once again. Jim and are will be joining a group of friends to run a half marathon in Indianapolis. I won’t lie, my knee is kinda tweaked and I am afraid that I that I will slow all my friends down. But I have had a couple of really good long runs and I feel pretty good about it.
But back to that day when I finished my 8 mile run. I got home from this run right about the time that Hank was getting home from school, and I was all *high five* and *fist bump* and *slap my butt* only that part I did myself because gross, I’m not going to have my kid slap my big old butt.
When I came home, however, I checked my phone and saw a text about the Boston Marathon. “What kind of asshole bombs a marathon?” my sister wrote.
So I snapped on the TV. Sure enough, some asshole bombed the Boston Marathon.
I am not afraid to run the half marathon in Indianapolis. But honestly, I’m kind of pissed. Everyone knows that you have to work really hard to get in shape. But sometimes, even the fittest of the fit, even they can’t run.
It’s true. Running isn’t just for people who are perfectly physically fit. I think I am proof of that. I’ve got a big butt and I cannot lie. I am a good 40+ pounds overweight. But I am a runner.
It’s this sport that is about much more than your footstrike and speed. I hit a 12-minute mile and I feel like Speedy Gonzalez only less animated and racist. It’s a sport that is far more about your ability to endure than your ability to hurry it up. You don’t need to be have a specialized skill, you just need momentum and stamina.
Nobody runs for the fame of it. I mean, name a famous marathoner. I am sure they exist, but if it’s not track and field at the Olympics (and seriously, who watches the “field” portion? Javelin is ZERO fun when no one is really at risk of being impaled), then no one is watching. And even then it’s just for the chance to yell USA USA and hope that this run will get you a free Big Mac.
Runners are all a little bit like Forrest Gump. We’re not going anywhere, we just felt like running.
Who the hell bombs those people?
I mean, it’s not like there is a group of athletes out there who deserve that more. But runners only run to run. Sure, the super top guys are sponsored and what not. But for the rest of them — the ones who are finishing 26.2 at the 4-hour mark — it’s just for their spiffy medal and a technical t-shirt that rides up funny and a photo that they have to pay $30 to get a copy of. It’s just to say, hey, I ran a marathon!
Runners are pretty selfless athletes. They see a goal, and it’s really far away, and they run to it. That’s all.
I think a lot of the runners this weekend will be doing it “in memory” of the victims. But not me, not so much. I am not running to honor them as victims. I am running to honor them as runners, and families of runners, and friends of runners. I am running to honor myself as a runner, and my own friends. I am running because I can. Because I am a runner.
I am a runner.
Wish us luck!