Well, of course the one week of training team that I couldn’t be there, Awesome Sauce Master of All Runs Coach Dan comes to visit. Remember the group picture? Do you see me in it? Of course you don’t. You see Awesome Dexter and you see Awesome Coach Dan and you see Awesome Coach Mandy and you see the masses of Awesome Training Team Members, but no Awesome Kimi.
<sigh> No, I’m fine. The bitterness will pass. Or so I’m told.
Just for the record, I did not slack off. I ran my two miles at the beach after getting up early to make breakfast for my husband’s family.
Those lucky, lucky participants who got to hang out with Coach Dan were served up some amazing wisdom.
The Zen of the Potato Chip
The story, as it was relayed to me, is this:
A new runner was moving along at a fairly good pace. Then, he began to tire. And then he began to tire more. After a while, he ran into a convenience store along the way, grabbing some potato chips to power his run. However, the bag was difficult to open and he didn’t want to break his stride, so he continued to run, grasping his bags of potato chips – one in each hand – very tightly.
A more experienced runner had seen the grasshopper runner go into the convenience store and come out with the chips. The chips looked very good, so the wizened runner also trotted into the store, bought two bags of chips, then returned to his route.
Upon reaching the check in destination on the roof and dutifully signing back in, the experienced runner enjoyed his yummy chips with a cup of cool clear water. It was a lovely few minutes crunching through the crispy goodness of potato chip and savoring the miles under his belt.
Sadly, the neophyte runner had no chips to enjoy. His chips had melted in his grasp, despite the indestructible bag that held them. Seeing the experienced runner chowing down on chips, Grasshopper approached the Wise One.
“Um, yeah,” said young Grasshopper, “Dude, how did you keep your chips from melting?”
“Simple,” replied the Wise One. “I held the chips delicately. We can tend to tighten up and grasp with our fists when trying to go further and faster. But the secret to success is to stride softly and carry a delicate chip.”
You may all feel free to groan now.
Buddy Up, Buttercup
It is with some relief that I share the following bit of news from week 2:
Dexter missed me. Awww…
I missed him, too. My run was completed on a treadmill at the gym because it was too hot to run on the beach by the time I was ready to hit the sand. The sun and I are not good friends, so I dragged myself to the gym up the street from my in-laws and ground out my two miles.
And it was a grind. Some days, the run is just like that. Then other days, it’s the most awesome, exhilarating thing you’ve done all week. Go figure.
Dexter and I talked about why it seems easier to run with a friend, and he summed it up nicely:
A. It is more enjoyable to have support right there beside you. Especially on the days you are just grinding it out.
B. It provides a focus when you hit the imaginary wall called, “I can’t go on”
C. It makes it fun. Who doesn’t need more fun?
D. I can be silly and holla, “All day long!” Which, in reality, may be our potato chip.*
*More on this little morsel in blogs ahead…
Flashback and Flash Forward
In all this discussion, I had a flashback to when Dexter and I used to walk at the local Vitacourse. Pairs of joggers and runners would pass us, chatting away as they went.
I remember saying to Dexter, “I just can’t understand that. How in the world can you ever run AND hold a conversation? I want to be able to do that one day…”
Guess what? We’re doing that now. Every training run, there’s chatter about the blog, the scenery, the house we just passed, how far we’ve run, how much distance we’ve got left, what street is that. It’s a little breathy, but it’s conversation, nonetheless. While we’re running.
Wishing You an Awesomelicious Day! Stay tuned for more on our Training Adventures!