Friday, August 17, 2012

I'm jealous of Hermes

When he ran, he flew — literally. I don't even need that. I just want to run.

I've now been injured for 10 weeks. Ten. With the exception of the marathon, I have not run more than six miles in that time. And it is killing me, slowly and painfully — both the not running and the treatment I'm getting for an inflamed tendon I didn't even know I had.

I see people running along the streets and I'm so mad at them because they can run and I can't. I put on my running shoes and can almost feel how sad they are to be heading toward the elliptical instead of the trail. I drive the routes I've run and remember the last time I saw this view on two pounding legs. I walk down a hill and think about how much fun it would be to stride out and run. I think about that last fateful run when I got up really early and ran into Provo Canyon, soaking in the morning air, watching the ants on the trail, admiring the sunlight between the leaves, feeling the adrenaline pump through my body as I pondered the miracle that is running 20 miles. I remember praying about how grateful I was for my health and that I could run.

I'm at a point now mentally where I'm not sure my leg will ever get better. It will; an inflamed IT band is a common injury and people get it and get over it all the time. But it's not going to happen by tomorrow, and it hasn't happened in the last 10 weeks, and every day that I don't run feels like a part of me is dying.

I take comfort in the scriptures — not the ones about patience or faith or knowing everything happens for a reason, but the ones that promise I will one day be able to run and not be weary. I think of C.S. Lewis, who wrote in his beautiful book "The Last Battle" that if people could run and not get tired they would never want to do anything else.

Right now, though, I don't care about being tired or sore. I can do all those things, as long as I get to run to reach that point.

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