Friday, August 08, 2014

I run because nothing is broken....

Every runner has those days when they just don't feel like running. Maybe the weather is crappy. Maybe you're tired. Maybe you're hungover.

When I was young, I not infrequently indulged these feelings and skipped more than my fair share of runs because I simply didn't feel like it. It never occurred to me that I wouldn't be able to run one day.

My first real wake up call came when I suffered a complete compression fracture of the left femoral head. I broke my left femur from running. The gift I had always taken for granted was taken away.

My first run post surgery was a tearful one mile exercise. The gift had been taken away, but only temporarily. I could still run and I still had yet to notch my first marathon.

Being broken is not an experience I would wish on anyone, but it was one of the best things that could have happened to me. I learned that youth is ephemeral as is life. None of us is guaranteed anything.

Becoming unbroken lit a fire in me that has yet to burn out. My first marathon gave way to qualifying for Boston, running a sub 3 hour marathon, and coming perilously close to notching a marathon in the 2:30's. I played with this fire and occasionally got burned.

Burned and sometimes broken again, I have never given up on the idea that I could become whole again. Most things that break can be fixed. Most wounds heal.

The list of aggravations and injuries I have suffered over the years is galling. It includes the aforementioned fractured femur, a stress fracture of the right femur, a stress fracture of the heel, two nasty cases of plantar fasciitis, a stress fracture of the right sacrum, and a litany of other setbacks.

Some might pack it in after suffering one of the aforementioned, let alone the entire list. But, the fire still burns.

The gift of being whole for now is enough reason to get out and run despite any crappy weather, fatigue, or hangover I might be suffering from. Until the fire is extinguished entirely, I'll keep lacing up to run because nothing is broken.....

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