I used to be a runner.
I don’t like writing that, but there it is. I’m not a runner anymore, and that bothers me, because I really liked being a runner.
The sense of accomplishment was awesome. The runner’s high was addictive. I loved measuring distance in terms of how long it would take me to run it. (10 miles? Less than two hours, baby!) It felt good to know that in the event of zombie apocalypse, my cardio was strong.
But then came the injury. New Years’ Eve, 2011, I blew out my right ankle something fierce. It took six weeks for me to get back to running again, and when I did, I had to go back to paltry 2-milers, instead of the 5+ miles I’d been regularly running by that point. That sucked.
And then, impatient soul that I am, I indulged in a bit of overtraining, and the ol’ ITB started twinging in my left knee. Brilliant.
I’d take a couple weeks off to let the knee heal, then, thinking I’d be fine just scaling back on distance, I’d go off on another run. Except, invariably, I’d push too hard, even if I thought I wasn’t, and *SPROING!* went the knee.
So here I am now, faced with the realization that I can no longer call myself a runner, and if I want to get back to that approaching-half-marathon health level, I need to start from the ground up and injury proof my training by taking it easy, dammit!
This doesn’t sit well.
But y’know what? If I want to be a runner again, I’m going to have to put in my time, put in the training, and eschew the shortcuts. Back to the beginning of the 13-week walk-run program I go. Why? Because I want it. Because I need to run. Because I love it, and it’s worth doing, and I feel better about myself when I do it.
Kind of like writing, no?
If I’m to be published, there can be no shortcuts. I simply have to keep at it, day by day, slogging through the stories even when I’m not feeling inspired. And if I have to scrap an entire novella and start it over from scratch because that’s what the story demands? I gotta do it.
How much do I want to be a runner?
How much do I want to be a writer?
How committed am I?