By Katherine Ward
“I think about everything and nothing at the same time. The world is endless, possibilities linger at my finger tips, dreams become reality, and then the clock abruptly stops and I am hurled back into existence. The only thing that remains is my labored breath, reminding me what could have been.
I run to get outside my head and enter my heart. This is where long lost, but not forgotten memories, aspirations, secrets, and desires lay. I run to push the boundaries of my soul, to stretch them so far I feel as if my heart would burst. Maybe then I would get to the satisfying destination.
There is something about running that is so innate; so natural, animalistic. Humans were designed to run and always move forward and beyond. And there is also something about running FAST that is so incredible; so purposeful, that it leaves another standing still, amazed.
Running is a battle of the heart over the mind and body. When I emerge back into existence, I feel as if I am a soldier returning from war–I have survived. But it more than just a simple act of survival; I have returned strong, wise, fervid, tenacious, vivid, resonant. I am more of myself than I will ever be.
I run to continuously be this person who is more of myself. Someone who is determined and courageous; someone who is undefeated. I run to the deepest crevices of my heart; to escape to a world of endless possible dreams. I run to get that much closer to myself.
And in the simplest way possible, this is why I run; what I think about while running, as well as in essence, who I am.”
**I have not blogged in a couple of weeks; my apologies!…
This week has been one of my longest mileage weeks of my life. At the beginning of the week, my schedule was overly daunting… in other words, I was really unmotivated! And then, it dumped a bunch of snow on Monday.
My blue tick, Nelly, and I decided that if we were to run in 2+ feet of snow, we should head to one of the most scenic places in Colorado Springs = Gold Camp Road. She handled eight miles like a champ (and when I say eight miles, I ran eight miles; she probably ran twice as much). I am really proud of Nelly; she has recently learned how to run off leash, and it makes running so much enjoyable with her. [Please view our awesome “selfie” below].
Tuesday was a sloppy day (snow melting), but thankfully my awesome aunt talked to me during my run for almost two hours (it takes a special person to want to listen to my heavy breathing conversation on the other line! Thank you, AT).
Wednesday was a tough workout mentally, because I could not hit my set paces. Obviously runners can make excuses (and every day is not a “great” day), but I really hate when I have a “poor” day. With running, and really any goal or objective you work hard towards, there are more “poor” days than “great” days. Overall, it is a humbling experience, and it just makes the end goal that much more meaningful.
The next couple of days were spent in Angel Fire, New Mexico!…. I could live in New Mexico forever. My runs were really gratifying (imagine 8,500+ feet of elevation up and down mountains). The change of scenery was MUCH needed, and you really cannot beat mountains upon mountains of scenery [the Rio Grande gorge was IMPRESSIVE]! I especially fell in love with Taos. If you ever find yourself in this artsy, adobe town, please go to “Moby Dickens” bookstore and say “hi” to Jay for me! (What an awesome, inspiring guy. Long story short, he gave up his corporate job in a big city, took a risk, and bought a bookstore in small town, NM. He spends his days taking his kids to/from school, snowboarding in the mornings, and working at his bookstore in the afternoons. Much kudos to him!).
Friday/yesterday, I ran my second run near the hot springs in Ojo Caliente, NM (after spending three hours using the hot springs, of course). I had been pretty sore from all my running earlier in the week, and the hot springs definitely did the trick! My run was up a “mini” mountain to a relatively “flat” plateau. [I took a lot of great pictures; check them out below!].
Today, we drove back to Colorado Springs in some dicey weather. I made it back before it got TOO bad, but I may or may not have been blind the last three miles of my workout [my husband took a picture of me; true dedication right there!].
I will brag about myself a little here…. I am proud to say that I ran my fastest, longest run yet today (despite the weather)! I have an amazing coach who has been getting me ready for my first big half marathon in less than two weeks. I am hoping to run a really big PR (Personal Record, for those who might not know)!
And with the longest running update post ever, I will be honest with you. I was really, really discouraged and unmotivated before this week began (especially knowing it was going to be poor weather and my longest high mileage week)! Thankfully, God is good and sometimes He comes through in the smallest ways. He came through this week in the form of companionship with my dog and my aunt; he came through with a spontaneous trip to New Mexico and change of scenery; and finally, when outside circumstances could have had an effect, I had a phenomenal fifteen mile workout today.
I got shaken free of my running “funk,” and I am excited to end my week of high mileage tomorrow, with an additional snow shoeing adventure with my teammates! Sometimes I just need to be reminded how blessed I am.