10 August 2009

One for The Books (i)

If there was ever a weekend ripe with the potential for disaster, this past weekend was it. Fortunately it turned out to be what we call "great California" weekend instead.

It started simply enough - with me heading to Ocean Beach to run eight miles. I was excited about my first venture above six. I had my running shoes, my running belt, my new goo, and a few butterflies in my stomach. I thought I was excited. It turns out it was the apprehension I usually can't explain just before something goes wrong.

I started my car, edged out out my parking spot, and could not help but notice my "check engine" light was blinking. I may have said this before, but the "check engine" light has to be dumbest indication of trouble in history. One (in this case: I) can not just check the engine. First of all, I wouldn't know if anything were misaligned or broken - I don't check the engine when all is well. How would I be able to determine if aught were amiss? Secondly, the "check engine" light doesn't indicate how many miles one might have before the car (in this case Henry) might stop. There's also no way to know if driving will make the problem worse, or if it might shake something in place and cure the whole malady. No. Telling me to check the engine does nothing but make me angry at the futility of a "check engine" light. There's no troubleshooting. Why bother?

I digress.

My light was blinking and I tried the "drive and shake something back into place" method. I went around the corner to pick up running - buddy Charlene. She suggested we check the manual (which we did) and that we not try to get to Ocean Beach (which we didn't). I parked Henry right where he had been and hope for the groundbreaking, eight mile run disappeared. San Francisco is only seven miles wide. I could design an eight mile course if I tried, but not off the top of my head. The best I could do was seven. And Charlene and I ran to Sports Basement. We set out to do a seven mile run, but I think we only did... six.

I've learned to listen to my body. Every four weeks, my body tells me there are things it cannot do. I used to think my body was saying "here is what I will not do" and I set out to overpower that with determination. But my body is clear - there are things it can not do. Even if it's been done before - even if it ought to be easy - there are things that cannot be done on certain days. On Saturday, running uphill was one of those things. I just didn't have it in me, and we walked more than we should have. But the conversation was good.

Reminder: I'm running in the Nike Women's Marathon as a fundraiser to fight Leukemia & Lymphoma. Please support me by donating here Thank you!