So I’ve run 408 miles in the past 16 weeks. Let’s say I run between an 8 and 8.5-minute mile. That means I’ve spent about 55 hours in the past 4 months running. A good majority of it solo. The good news for me is that I actually enjoy spending time by myself. I’m the type of person who doesn’t find it painful to be alone. In fact, I quite enjoy the hour or two or three I get to be alone and run. It gives me an opportunity to escape and think and daydream and reflect. A lot has gone through my mind in the past 4 months. So to build on Monday’s note, this is what goes through my mind.
Sometimes I think of very serious things. I think of how lucky I am to be healthy and have strong, functioning lungs. I think of others who have CF and hope that the ones who are sick and need new lungs get them. I think of my friends who have gotten a second chance at life and how happy I am for them. I think of how important it is to live in the moment and take advantage of your opportunities and to take chances.
Sometimes I try to figure out how I’m going to balance a full-time job, two chronic illnesses, an active social life (I’m pretty popular) and training for a marathon. I think of my family and friends and colleagues and how great they are. How they are always by my side whenever I need them. Whether it’s to just talk, or bring me a meal when I’m sick, go to a movie on Friday night instead of the bar, take time out there day to call and see how the doctor’s appointment, or to run a marathon with me when I ask they’re always there.
Sometimes I think of not so serious things. I wonder why the grown men in the park are playing with swords. However, they probably wonder why I’m running multiple 6-mile laps. I envy the little kids playing soccer. How carefree and uncomplicated their lives are. Sometimes I stare at the skyline of Manhattan and how pretty the lights are or about laying on the beach in the Caribbean. I think of the bad jokes I told earlier in the day and laugh to myself or the pizza and milk shake or root beer float that I’m going to eat once I’m done running.
Sometimes I don’t think at all. Sometimes I start running and completely forget I’m running and two hours later I’m done. Sometimes I just sing along to the music for two hours. Sometimes I just think about nothing and run.
As you can see, a lot goes through my mind. Some serious, some not so serious. Either way, each run is unique. Each run is special. Each run means something different to me.