Thursday, July 1, 2010

On Being Human

Yesterday was June 30. I intended to make much of the one-month-to-go milestone (my marathon's in Wakefield on July 30), but then I also intended to do my 5-mile short run at the end of a long work day. Instead, an urgent work project followed me home and swallowed up the end of my day.

And yet way, way too late I put on my running clothes and pulled my hair back into a tight ponytail fully intending to get my training in, dammit, before snapping safely back to my senses: Clearly, I needed to sleep more than I needed to not miss a second run. And just when I was starting to berate myself for missing a second run of my training season, a friend and fellow writer and runner sent me an email asking how the training was going:
"If there's one piece of advice that you won't hear too often, it's this: MILK IT! Eat that pint of ice cream, get a massage, let the dishes fill the sink, and yes, by all means, tell that cause-of-the-day-canvasser: 'I'm running a marathon for Grub, now fuck off.'"
But while I'm not ready to tell members of the unsuspecting public to fuck off, I'm positively a-tingle with the idea of unleashing an f-bomb (or thirty) on the harpy in my head that will not let this lousy missed run die already.

So harpy of mine, I tried to reason with you. Because really there's nothing earth shattering with a missed run here and there as long as I'm getting up on Friday mornings for my long run (I have and I will--18 miles tomorrow and why I'm not in bed right now is a riddle for another time). And though I'd say this seemed like a perfectly logical argument, my harpy just screeched all the louder (as harpies will), and I'm left with no other options. So here I am, pushing back my metaphorical sleeves, taking a deep breath, and telling my inner harpy exactly where she can shove that relentlessly shrill shriek of hers.

Now maybe I can finally get some sleep...

Catherine Elcik is running her first marathon to raise money for a scholarship fund for Grub Street, Inc, an independent writing center in Boston, MA. Sponsor the run (and quite frankly, her second wind) at

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