Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Thanks-Giving Post

We’re on that page of the calendar where we are reminded to be thankful for what we have…and perhaps what we don’t have. Family, friends, food and fortune all constants on what should be an ever-growing list of gratitude.
"We run, not because we think it is doing us good, but because we enjoy it and cannot help ourselves"
- Sir Roger Bannister, first runner to break the 4min/mile barrier
It goes without saying, though I will type it anyway to set the stage for this post, that I am thankful to be able to run, and thankful for all that I have in my life that has come to me through running. Running itself, the movement and motion, I love. The friends I have gained through this shared passion are priceless. The places I’ve been (Hawaii and Alaska especially) that I have seen on foot are memories branded in my mind. The moments I’ve shared with people – from casual post-work jogs to final marathon miles – I would not trade away. And the sense of satisfaction I experience when I complete a workout that I doubted I could … that, too, gives me purpose.

I am thankful, and I am curious, too. I have been wondering lately: What if I couldn’t run? What if someone took away running from me? What would I miss? Well, the above recollections are just that, moments that have passed. Moments that no one can take away from me. But what of the future? What if you were told today to hang those shoes up by their laces and, essentially, sit your life still?

Some views, like this one from a team run in Palos Verde, CA, would not be imbued with the magic it is when seen on foot.

Some food, like the Egg eating the eggs on our Halloween Run, would not taste as good.

I might not speak as frankly as I do to others.

I would not get others to believe that they are capable of amazing things. And then we both lose out.

But maybe I would devote my life to something more … something better. I could volunteer more, write me, work more, and create a different kind of change. It’s an interesting idea to entertain in an alternate, surreal reality; to ask, who would I be if I did not run? And then deduce from that, who has running made me? And what have I made running? More than just the motion, assuredly.

Thoughts to chew on in between mouthfuls of stuffing.

Happy Thanksgiving, my first in Los Angeles. Pictures from tomorrow’s Topanga Turkey Trot 15K later on.


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