Did You Ever…?

Runners have a lot of experiences in common. We can all identify with the satisfaction that comes from nailing a long training run, whether that long run is two miles or twenty. Standing in line to use a less-than-sparkling porta-potty is something we have all done (haven’t we?). We have all had days when we didn’t want to run, but we ran anyway. After the run is over, we are glad we did it.

Meditations in Motion

As I set out for my run today, I began thinking about all the experiences we runners have in common. Tell me,

Did you ever…

  • Get your guard up during a run, only to laugh at yourself for being alarmed? As I was running out in the countryside today, on a lightly traveled road, I heard a vehicle come up behind me and begin to slow down. I looked around. There was no one in sight. The nearest building, a farmhouse, was a quarter mile away. I looked out of the corner of my eye. The vehicle was a black van. “Uh oh! A van. That’s not good“, I thought.

Then I saw that the driver of the van was a woman. An older woman. An older Mennonite woman. A Black-bumper Mennonite woman. (For those of you who are unfamiliar, Black-bumper Mennonites paint the chrome on their cars black so they are less ostentatious.)

She asked me where I was from and if I lived nearby. I guess she was worried about me. I was out in the country with no houses in the vicinity. Or maybe she just wanted to determine whether I was a tourist, possibly lost.ย  In either case, she was no threat. I got my hackles up for nothing.

Meditations in Motion

  • Buy running shoes that you hated and didn’t wear? All of the shoes in the picture above are my typical brand, Nike Air Pegasus.

I sometimes wish I had long, graceful, slender feet, but I don’t. My feet are the opposite of that. I wear a size 6. And my feet are wide. I must find shoes with a wide toe box for comfort.

When my previous favored brand altered the fit and made the toe box of their shoes narrower, I asked the owner of our local running store to give me a recommendation for a different shoe. He sized me up. “Nike Pegs. You’ll love ’em“, he said.

I tried them. At first, I did not love them. They were not at all what I was used to. They were much lighter, more “responsive“. I don’t know a better word to describe the way they feel. I grew to love them.

Then, for some unimaginable reason, I decided to try something new and bought the brand that my hubby uses. I hated them! They felt like I had big old wooded boxes strapped to my feet. I wore them for less than 100 miles, then went back to the running store. “Nike Pegs, size 6?” the owner said, smiling. “Yep.

Meditations in Motion

  • Have someone run you in for the final mile of a race? Before Bill ran marathons, he used to meet me at mile 25 and run the final mile of my race with me. I can’t tell you how much I appreciated that. Instead of looking forward to mile 26, I looked forward to mile 25. It somehow made the race seem shorter because I knew he would be waiting there so we could run the last mile together.

Several years ago, I ran the Eugene, Oregon marathon. Bill ran the half and my middle son ran the 5k. After he ran the half, Bill waited around for almost two hours, then went to mile 25 to meet me so we could run the final mile together.

I was trying to qualify for Boston, and as Bill waited, he knew that I would have to show up soon, or miss my qualifying time. Finally, he saw me off in the distance. He encouraged me through the final mile, then stepped off the course about 100 feet before the finish line.

He was still wearing his racing clothes and his bib from the half. A woman watching the race shouted to him “Oh no! Don’t stop now! The finish line is so close.” She thought he was quitting the marathon with only 100 feet to go. He explained the situation to her, then, with our son, enveloped me in a big hug as I crossed the line with two minutes to spare. There may have been some tears.

Yes, we runners are a tight-knit community. I have made so many friends, both in person and online, through running. Part of what makes us so close is our bank of shared experiences. They make for some great stories and some wonderful memories. Please share some of yours.

Have any of the experiences I listed ever happened to you?
What are some other experiences many runners share?

I am linking up with Fairytales and Fitness for Friday 5 and Holly from HoHo Runs and Wendy from Taking the Long Way Home for their Weekly Wrap.

 

 

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67 comments

  1. Yes, after a run once I watched a women in a car, and a man outside the car who kept coming up to “argue” with her through the window. She would pull away, and then back up. She kept doing that and the man would chase her car. I thought they were in a dispute. I watched ( from my car) a while longer and then found out the man was teaching the young women to parallel park! This was in a State park, parking lot, so there weren’t exactly painted lines on the road for parking!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m a novice runner, but I’ve done #1 and #2 in my running career. Dark vans are scary and I do have quite a few shoes that I don’t love – they’ve become lawnmowing shoes though…! Happy trails to you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • My old shoes become either knock-around-the-house shoes or trail running shoes. The ones I didn’t like, I donated, however. I didn’t want them anymore. I didn’t know you are a runner! So cool!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, a daily – for exercise kind of runner. My husband and I run together in the warm months, and then we hit the treadmill in the winter. We love 5k races or 5-mile ones at the most.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. When I buy the wrong pair of shoes I still make myself gut through a few hundred miles with them. As a result, if I have a pair I like Iโ€™ll keep them for maybe 500 miles before I get a new pair. Air Pegs were my Shoes for year. I donโ€™t remember why I switched.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Sorry I canโ€™t share any experiences as a long distance runner, but my husband and son shout encouragement when I stand motionless on the golf course with my brain turned to mush, my body turned to a salt pillar, feeling powerless and forgetting everything I ever learned about the golf swing ๐Ÿ˜‚

    I am so moved by the dedication and love shown by your husband all through the running years. It truly is inspiring, and your posts are incredibly inspiring as well.

    Blessings and continued running health to you and yours!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much for the very kind comment! I tried to learn to golf so that I could golf with hubby, but I am a much better runner than golfer. We play together in a few scramble tournaments each year, but that is the extent of my golfing. Everyone else in my family golfs, except me!

      Liked by 1 person

      • My daughter refuses to golf or do yoga (two things I enjoy doing) , but she loves running (no marathons thoโ€™) and Soul Cycle. Sheโ€™s in law enforcement so she needs to stay in shape. Itโ€™s great when people find their own inspiring athletic niche.

        Golf is a crazy (mental) game and one of these days I may have to replace it with pickle ball which I am at present starting to learn. Anything that takes me outdoors. That is why I love golf.

        Cheers to you !!!

        Liked by 1 person

  5. If I don’t like a pair of running shoes — or it’s time to retire them — they become walking shoes.

    No one has ever run me in, although I had a race where some random woman offered to. Like the “older, slower” runner passing me, it ticked me off! Did I really look that bad? I was having a good race!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I didn’t know about the black bumper thing. I’ve definitely had horrible running shoes I did not wear. Thankfully they had a 30 day test/return policy. I never had someone run me in. That would be so cool!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. My wife and I were never runners. We were cyclists – tandem cyclists. Wife’s knees started giving her problems and we stopped. A great advantage for running is you don’t have to worry about someone running off with your stuff while you coffee up. Laurie.
    L

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh no! I hope that never happened to you! Hubby and I would like to ride the bikes more often when he retires later this month, but I have never ridden a tandem bike. Looks like fun.

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  8. I think we have established that I do not run, even when not in a cast! LOL. I am so glad you are able to get back to what you love. That is so very important. I thought of you the other day as I was coming in from my Dr appt and wheeling myself down the sidewalk to the front door, a young lady who was running stopped to see if I needed help but I told her I was OK as much as I could be. She stated she was trying to get her hip back in to running form and I told her about you, because I do know y’all lean on each other for support, probably regardless of knowing other runners or not. Hope you are doing well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for thinking of me, Anita. I actually wrote this post before I took my break from running. I plan to try running again next week, but just short, slow runs. If I feel any pain, I will stop. I feel foolish complaining about a little hip pain when you are in a cast! ๐Ÿ™‚ We all lean on each other – runners or not!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. These are all nice experiences Laurie – especially your husband joining you on the last leg of your marathon – that is thoughtful and I would forward to mile 25 as well. I’ve only been in two 5Ks … one last year to benefit education in Lincoln Park (the one this year I signed up for but it was raining … no rain suit, next year for sure); and Fish and Loaves this year with donations for the race going toward a local food pantry. I hope you can run again soon and your two weeks off will benefit your hip immensely.

    Liked by 1 person

      • I’m sorry to hear that Laurie and I think you have one more week of your self-imposed two weeks of no running? I wanted to walk in an Anti-Bullying walk and will do that next year – it rained for this year, but it is annual event at Heritage Park, and also I signed up for a walk through the Arthritis Foundation – torrential rain that day!

        Liked by 1 person

      • No, my 2 weeks were up this weekend. I ran with Bill from the rec center yesterday. a short, slow run and I feel good today. Keeping my fingers crossed! Not going to do any posts about it just yet.

        It sounds like if your area ever experiences a drought, you should just sign up for a race. You are a drought-buster! ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      • That two weeks is up already! The time passed by fast – but not for you I am sure. I will keep my fingers crossed for you Laurie. Running is a big part of your life and you would miss it – in the meantime, could you alternate running with race walking til you are 100%? I like that moniker and it sure is true. The day of the Arthritis Foundation 5K, I had to drive to get there, about 15-20 minutes away. Rain was in the forecast for later. I went to the garage, went to start the car, and a terrific rumble of thunder and torrential rain fell. It was like that the rest of the day.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. I had definitely gotten creeped out on more than one run. I tend to keep a mental note of the cars that pass me (ex “White Ford truck”) when I’m on back roads so that if I see them again I can assume something is up. I have been a dedicated Brooks Ghost running shoe fan for the past several years and have no desire to try any other kinds.

    In line with the “scary parts” of being a runner I think of how often I hear a dog bark/growl and I get freaked out. I also think of the common annoyances like the cars who don’t move out of the way when I’m running on the roads and make me jump over into fields/on uneven surfaces. There are also great commonalities like running with friends.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, running with friends is one of my favorites, too. I have stood up to several unleashed farm dogs that gave me a scare, but the dog that actually bit me was on a leash (held by a little girl) in town.

      I used to be much more aware of nearby vehicles when I ran by myself in the dark before school.

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  11. I bought two pair of running shoes back to back that were causing issues with my calves (serious tightness and pain when I would run). I got rid of them both and figured out they both were low drop shoes (heel to toe). I pay more attention to that when I buy shoes now.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. For my first marathon, a fellow runner (whom I’d never met) saw me walking through the water stand just after mile 25. He told me I couldn’t stop now…and he ran the final mile in with me. He also rallied the crowds of people on my behalf (telling them it was my first marathon). It was quite a memorable finish to such a grand event ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I love those small town look outs. I was living in Western Australia and walking to get groceries and a couple pulled over to see if I needed a ride. Nothing shady, just looking out for others. Thanks for explaining black bumper, I’m familiar with menonites but not that aspect.
    Cheating on shoes is rarely rewarded

    Liked by 1 person

  14. It was several weeks ago around 5:45 AM that an unfamiliar older car stopped at the entrance to my street and just sat there as I approached from behind. Just as I got close, the driver’s door opened and the interior light came on. It could have been something as innocent as a spilled coffee, but wasn’t sticking around to find out. I made a quick u-turn and sprinted in the opposite direction pulling something in my right glute that has been nagging me ever since. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

    I love your story of Bill meeting you at mile 25 of several marathons that he wasn’t running and escorting you for your final mile. Sounds like something my Bill would do if he could.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I’ve ^returned^ shoes I didn’t like. I have one pair I got for a review that didn’t like me. I was surprised at how much I like the Under Armor shoes we got for being on the Cherry Blossom social media team. Today a woman paced me through the (hardest) middle miles of my race — or maybe we paced each other. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh, that’s nice. I always love finding a good pacer. I have never tried Under Armor shoes. They look pretty, though. I haven’t done the Cherry Blossom in years. I love that race. I used to get in for free because one of the guys we went with got entries. I think he was a radio personality, so the race got some publicity. The best part of the Cherry Blossom for me was always brunch at the Kennedy Center afterward. What a fabulous splurge!

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  16. I switched shoe brands once. I thought the new shoes felt great! But after horrible Achilles issues, I went back to my first love – Mizunos. You are a lucky lady to have a husband to run with and support you in the last miles of a marathon. My husband usually doesn’t come to races with me, but sometimes he will surprise me at the end of a local race (which is a special treat) or travel with me to a destination race. Thanks for linking!

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s funny how we each usually become so loyal to our own brand! It’s nice that your hubby will travel with you to race. I love to travel to a racing destination with Bill. He and I have the same tastes when it comes to eating out and places to stay. Thanks for the opportunity to share!

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