Thursday, January 5, 2012

Staring into Scott Jurek's Eyes

Last night marked my first tempo run since prior to my injury in the fall.  I had no idea how challenging it would be.  Initially, I was running on my treadmill while watching Parenthood, but as soon as I kicked up the speed to my tempo pace I knew I had to ditch the TV.  It was just too distracting as I was trying to push myself for the first time in awhile.

Instead, I turned on some upbeat tunes by The Naked and Famous and stared into Scott Jurek's eyes.  No, he wasn't in my living room, although that would be awesome!  Remember back in Chicago when Ang met Scott Jurek at the marathon expo and had him sign a poster for me?  Well, that poster now resides above my treadmill.  This was the first time I really used it for inspiration. 

"Run Long & Always with Heart, Scott Jurek"

I swear I could hear Scott talking to me.  His eyes were telling me to be strong and to push.  Nothing great in life comes easy.  Granted, the pace I was running would have been a piece of cake at this same time last year, but it was a struggle to maintain.  Scott struggles too, I'm sure.  He is mentally and physically strong which is the reason he was able to win Western States a bazillion times.  To top it off, he runs on plants!  He is truly my vegan, running idol. 

This tough run reminded me that speed is something you have to work for.  If it came easily it wouldn't be as rewarding.  If running in general were easy, everyone would be doing it!  Right?  We love running because it presents a challenge -- something to work toward.  It teaches us to push outside of our comfort zone, to be mentally strong and to endure.  Running is such a beautiful thing!  I am so grateful for running and all it has taught me.  I truly wouldn't be as strong of a person today without it.

Who knew a little tempo run could evoke so much emotion and inspiration?