For as long as I can remember, I told people "I can't run." But in March of 2009, I decided that this was no longer an option. From my first 5K to my second half marathon, I've endured my highest highs and lowest lows as an official Runner. This year I want to embrace running for something beyond times and distances.

Running is so much more than merely getting out there. I want to get out there and love it.

Friday, March 25, 2011

If Beth Can Do It...

So somewhere between now and three months ago, I went from 22 to 52 followers. I must've got caught in someone's net back there!

To recap, my promise to myself this year was to take the pressure of all this running and blogging and run-blogging, and instead, be inspiring, be kind, and be mindful of embracing exercise rather than condemning it every two seconds. For the past three months, I've taken up running once again after our breakup. I've been doing something I've always criticized: treadmill running. As part of my journey to walk run in other people's shoes, I've decided to be less critical and more open to the various ways people train. Sure, once I was a super-hardcore/glutton-for-punishment runner in the winter, but I'm ok with putting that aside to run in the [too]warm gym at 6am instead of the bitter elements.

For those of you who have dealt with starting-from-scratch running, you'll be delighted to know that this is precisely how I currently feel about my status as a runner. With my 5k PR at 25:30 (~8:15min miles), this year I can barely do a 5k in under 32 minutes (~10:15min miles). Am I complaining? Maybe a little, but I'm mostly embracing it as a humble experience. It certainly takes the pressure off!

So with that said, it's not Monday, but I am inspired by another one of my fellow run-bloggers. She's practically a celeb in the run-blog world...the Shut Up And Run girl, aka Beth. And while "Shut Up And Run" is a great mantra, because of her backstory, I often find myself using the more-appropriate mantra "What Would Beth Do?" And if you read any of the following references to her blog, you'll find that while she does shut up occasionally, more often she is honest, she is accepting, she never takes herself too seriously, and she is pee-or rather poo-your pants hilarious. By applying all of these qualities to your own life, whether it be in your exercise, your work, or even your relationships with people, I think we could all feel a lot more satisfied with our lives.

(showing me ice-bathing is the way to go)

The Spark Notes version of her story is that she's a Ultra Awesome Boston-Qualified Marathon Runner who got hurt...bad (femoral neck) and hobbled her way through, now, nearly six months of rehab to get where she is today: ready to run the Boston Marathon as she had planned pre-injury. Sure she won't run it as fast as she could've when she qualified. But she's gonna damn-well run it. And probably with a much more positive and engaged mentality than pre-injury to boot!

The [not so?]funny thing is, this has happened to her before. Just a month prior to her injury-announcement, she wrote a post about over-training in which she describes her LAST stress-fracture (this time in her foot) a year ago that put her out for two months. Clearly, my girl is no stranger to running injuries. But as she admits, it can be difficult to not want to push through the pain you aren't supposed to push through. While I can't relate to her stellar marathon skills, I can relate to pushing past the point of good-for-you. Not even physically so much, but mentally. It can wear you a stress fracture of the mind, excuse the cheese ;)

In any case, Beth is a role model to many a runner out there, especially new runners. Despite her injuriEESSS, she takes a moment to mourn, and then gets right back out there. I mean she freaking water-runs and for over an HOUR. Why? Because it's good for you when you can barely walk without crutches that's why!

But honestly, if I thought running on a treadmill was boring, I can hardly imagine what water-running for an hour must be like. Eff running in the bitter cold, THIS is hardcore :)

In an effort to cram-pack this post with as many link-references to Beth's blog, I will leave you with this final post. If you haven't read any of the above, read this, because I think it truly encapsulates Beth's attitude, humility, and perseverance. If you've ever dealt with any set-backs--even if it's just a "mental" stress-fracture--this helps you feel connected're not alone.

What Would Beth Do becomes What Would You Do?

And as Beth quotes:
“If you relax your mind into every situation exactly the way it is and accept that fact without any ifs, ands, or buts, then you can gain peace, self-acceptance, and the ability to allow solutions. Otherwise, you are locked in that place of your past behaviors which created your present reality.” (source)


  1. Awesome post....she's something isn't she? and I am SO happy to see you back blogging!!

  2. Thanks for posting her blog (one good thing leads to another)! I'm not sure how I found you in the first place.. but I suppose I am one of those who have joined you recently ;)

    I just started running (again) in January.. Funny how we (me + running) keep breaking up and making up lol.. My first 1/2M is in May. Thanks for the inspiration!

  3. Yay Claire!!!! Yesterday I had barely anything to do at work for once (GASP!!!) and went on a blog-frenzy, catching up with everyone! It was really inspirational and definitely got me excited about running ;) Congrats on your 24 miler OMG!!!! I'm so impressed with you, you don't even know! Are you still running the South Shore Half???

    Myra I just perused your blog, you're so cute!! Good luck on your first HALF so exciting!!! I hope you find a 15K to race :) PS Your dog is aaaaaaaaaaaaaadorable!

  4. South Shore is on...going to use it as a marathon pace run. Soooo glad to see you back at it! And totally miss you on Facebook!

  5. Yay, Katie! So happy to see you "back" on the blog. I need some inspiration somehow. Not even in the running-specific world, but just working out in general. I need a kick in the pants somehow and not sure how to get it! My "diet" blog works as far as creating my awareness, but otherwise I keep blaming it on the weather, since I'm so excited to run outside again -but that excuse is wearing thin. I should read some of the blogs you follow to get some sort of motivation going up in here!!!

  6. Claire I'm SUPER excited!! I'll email you my digits so we can get our communicado on before the race!

    Monica, I definitely recommend checking out some of the other blogs! I agree though, I could use some nice 50-60 degree running days. I'm not asking for much! 50 degrees is fine with me! Haha :)