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All or Nothing


Wallis Sands

Yesterday was supposed to be the last long run in my training cycle before my goal race next week. I had been looking forward to this 12 mile run all week-since it would be a good way to run most of the route at an easy pace, imprinting a few key distance markers on my brain, as well as sharing a couple hours with my youngest daughter on Mother’s Day.

But sometimes, runs do not go as planned. We got a later start than expected, and knew that the unseasonal temperatures would climb well into the 80’s before noon. We decided to take 2 cars and leave 1 car at the 9 mile mark. With plenty of fuel, including Gatorade (which I have never used during a run) we headed out with great intentions.

I was betting against my back acting up, knowing I had a chiropractor appointment the next day, and knowing that I had delayed getting treatment after my golf vacation and back to back race weekends. I lost. At the 3 mile mark I was stopped dead in my tracks and had to catch my breath due to an all too familiar sensation in my upper thoracic spine. I walked it out and started jogging again, and we talked about turning back and only running 6, but decided to forge ahead to the 9 mile car.

I was annoyed with myself because I should have gone to the chiropractor before getting to that point, but my daughter said something that made it all okay.

“Mom, I used to be an all or nothing kind of runner. If I couldn’t run 7 or 8 miles I just wouldn’t go at all. But now I realize some people can’t even run a mile, so if I go for a run and I have to walk part of it or it isn’t a good run, it’s okay.”

After  90 minutes of running/walking as the temperatures climbed to 80 degrees, in spite of my pain, I tried to focus on the time spent on the road, with my daughter, sharing stories, advice and Gatorade. It may not have been the run that was planned, but it was a great way to spend the morning.

Are you an all or nothing runner? I may have to have those little words tuked into my sock from now on.

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