Saturday, November 24, 2007

Checks and Balances

This summer, I tried to train for a half marathon. Yes, this would be the same summer that I wrote the Shore book. Why I thought this would be a good idea, I don't know. Superwoman complex? Mega type-A? Whatever the reason, I couldn't do both at once, so I dropped out of training and finished the book.

I didn't completely stop, though. I run three to four times a week to stay in shape (and to clear my head -- running is great for that). I quit because running stopped being a mental relief and started being another job, not something I needed while trying to write my first book. Still, I couldn't read last Monday's Philadelphia Inquirer, which was chock full of articles about the Philadelphia Marathon. It was too much a reminder of what I didn't achieve.

Why post this now? Because today I ran Haddon Township's Turkey Trot 5K, and I placed second in my age group. I ran almost as fast as I ran a 5K when I trained with a running coach for a magazine article. I was shocked to see my time, and even more stunned when I was called up for a medal.

Even though I didn't run the half marathon, and even though I didn't win, I'm darn happy with how today went. I have to remind myself that perfection is not always an option (something that I'll need to keep in mind when the book comes out and people start pointing out what I didn't include). I was so happy with how this morning's results that I couldn't taken the medal off. I wore it as vacuumed the house. I still have it on. Why not? How often is it that you win a medal?

This would also be a good time to point out that there are loads of races down the shore every spring, summer and fall. I hope to be part of a lot of them, especially the annual Tim Kerr 7 mile run, which spans Avalon and Stone Harbor. The Ocean Drive Marathon will be held on March 30, too. I won't be training for that one, but I'll probably sign up for a shorter version of the race. Who knows. Maybe I'll win medal #2.

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