Last year was not great for my running. I was constantly letting my laziness and exhaustion overtake me instead of pushing myself, and I did zero races. I’m not talking about virtual races, I’m talking about standing at the starting line with a large group of strangers, running through the cheering crowds, pushing through the course, crossing the finish line and having a medal placed around your neck and limping away triumphant race. I love races. I’m not fast, and I’m never in it for the possibility of winning. I’m there for the feel of the crowd, the excitement in the air, and the exhilarating moment of crossing the finish line.
This year, I decided I needed to get to a race again. I have already picked out two semi-local races, spread apart and with a few options for distances which will let me have options if my training does not go well. I was just waiting to get started training again until I got over being sick. I had a massive flu/chest cold incident which has left me with the joy of coughing fits whenever I either move around too much or in a strange way. Not the end of the world, but not something that would work well with running in freezing temperatures.
Yesterday worked to show me just how far I had fallen. As I mentioned before, yesterday was my Big One’s birthday. Growing up in a large, and quite bluntly poor, family, we didn’t do much as far as birthdays went. There were no big parties, and we didn’t go out to eat. Instead, on your birthday you were allowed to choose what was cooked for dinner, as well as what kind of homemade cake you wanted. Living far away from everyone and everything, we keep the tradition. Its simple, easy, and all about family.
Big One had a simple request for her birthday; a Reeses Peanut Butter Cup cake, and curry. Our curry is a little different from other curries. Our curry is based on our favorite Japanese curry house, Coco Ichibanya. It’s a thick curry sauce, almost a gravy, that we eat over rice and chicken cutlets. Most of this was easy enough, however we had no chicken breasts. The store down the block, about 1/2 mile away, was out of chicken leaving me with there choice between disappointing my child on her 13th birthday, or making my way to the next closest grocery store, 3 miles away.
Yes, I did it. I walked three miles the next town, bought the chicken, then walked three miles home. After that excursion, I whipped up the cake and then lay down for a long rest. Walking six miles had been nothing such a short time ago, and now it exhausted me. Not a happy thought.
I consider myself lucky however. Sure it, was not a fun walk, and I have a wonderful blister as a souvenir, but I was able get what I needed for my child. The look on her face, when she was able to have what she wanted was worth every sore step I took. It’s just what we do for our kids.