…No, wait, that’s just my nose.
It wasn’t part of the plan to begin training for the Boston Marathon while battling a case of the sniffles — particularly with another race, the 3M Half Marathon, right on the horizon. But this time of year, there’s only so much that one immune system can withstand.
Good news prevails, though: the sniffles are retreating, AND it’s a brand new year! Between the start of the new year and the start of marathon training, I can feel the buds of optimism growing in me. And I’m pretty sure that’s not just DayQuil haze.
2013 arrived genially. On December 31st, I picked up my sister and her husband from the airport (they stayed in Virginia a little longer than I did), and then went for a run. I had done a long run the day before, so this was an opportune time for one of those “contemplative” runs. You know, one of those runs where you peacefully reflect on the previous year with quiet gratitude…while also trying not to slip on ice or get hit by cars. Okay, maybe it wasn’t a very poetic experience, but it was a solid end-of-year run nonetheless.
After the run, we all went out for a scrumptious New Mexican feast at Garduno’s, then came back to my apartment for the long march to midnight. We’re talking about a crowd for whom 10 pm is a late bedtime. Luckily, we had those marvelous inventions, television and DVDs, to help us, and some homemade orange chocolate chip bread to nibble on, and by golly we saw that ball drop.
We started off the new year with, surprise, a run (after sleeping in to recover from that strenuous evening). As far as New Year’s runs go, I loved it. The morning was chilly but bright, and we decided to go exploring. We did a loop, with me choosing the first half and sister Erin suggesting the second half. We ran along Camino de la Sierra, which in that part of Albuquerque is the last paved street before you reach the dirt of the foothills. In other words, the street is…not flat. But on that clear morning, with snow on the mountains and sunshine on our faces? I couldn’t have picked a better run to kick off 2013. Not to mention, it inspired me: for this round of marathon training, I do believe I’ll incorporate hill workouts on a regular basis. See what Heartbreak Hill has to say about that come April!
I’m thinking now is the time to encourage those buds of optimism, gently, with love. I have my goals for the future, but they’re fairly quiet right now. They don’t evoke bombast and intimidation and dread; they make me happy, and I look forward to achieving them in due time with some good old-fashioned work.
In due time. Right now, I’m slicing a piece of orange chocolate chip bread and watching “When Harry Met Sally” (my traditional New Year’s movie). I’m looking forward to 3M and plotting more hill runs. I’m beginning 2013 with a smile on my face, and I wish the same to you.
As for the redcoats? Don’t worry about them. They’re cool. And they have really good tea.