Saturday, October 18, 2008


I have so little to read. There are no unread posts in my Google Reader. I finished the March '08 issue of Runner's World -- again. Oh, c'mon, like you haven't re-read a magazine in your life! I've read all the Internet articles about hamstrings that I can handle, thankyouverymuch. I'm waiting to be notified that the two books -- Strides by Benjamin Cheever and What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami -- I put on reserve at the library are available.

Yup. No running today so I'd love to read about some running. And yet I have nothing to read.

Big whoop, you say?

Well. Let me tell you what happened. I took Conal shoe shopping today for his first pair of big boy shoes. Walking to the store, I caught a glimpse of myself reflected in a store window. I looked quite momified: Wearing those unflattering jeans that I am going to get rid of right now; carrying the purse overflowing with toddler paraphernalia (sippy cup, Cheerios, board book, wipes) and wrinkled receipts that have been shoved randomly here and there, just waiting for a gust of wind to help them break free of the confines of a messy handbag; and wearing the too-big, inappropriate-for-the-weather coat that did absolutely nothing to counter the unflattering fit of the jeans. (Truth be told, the coat is probably as unflattering as the jeans but I love it so and will not part with it. Ever.)

So, I caught a glimpse of myself, felt a little dowdy, and then it happened. They strolled right in front of me. The runners. The Vassar men's cross country team -- some of them limping, some of them walking with the chin-up stride of someone who only an hour earlier set a PR -- walked off their bus and into the bagel shop. Right in front of me. Practically mocking* my momified non-running state.

I drove home and thought about going for a run just to show them and then I remembered that a) I promised myself a day off after two of running and b) Owen is away all day and so there is no one to watch Conal while I run. OK, so I wasn't going to run. I could at least read about it.

I read the few posts that showed up in Google this afternoon and now here I am.

I have not shown them. Not that going running would have shown them. Nor would reading about running, really. And, honestly, there wasn't anything to show them.

Just me. Sometimes I need to show me.

Show me that I can look all of my 38 years and still be a decent, dedicated runner.

Since I can't read my way out of momification, I'll have to do the only other thing that seems to make sense in this situation: Go to my closet and get rid of those unflattering jeans. And that pair of corduroys. And that awful-length skirt that I've been hanging on to for far too long.

And then I'll put my feet up in anticipation of tomorrow's long run.

* * * *

*Yes, I do know they weren't mocking me. I know it was all in my head. I know I should run my own race. And yet, their presence made it oh-so-obvious that I am old and cannot handle running every single day and they are young, their best days probably still ahead of them.


BeachRunner said...

I think someone needs a hug. :)

Eff the cross country team. And truth be told, I'll bet you were the hottest mom around even with the giant bag and frumpy jeans.

Aron said...

LOL i just LOOOVE this post :)

you can get them tomorrow on your run!!!

thanks for the encouraging words too - i am feeling better already :)

Marcy said...

I'm constantly in the Momified state LMAO! I live in black capri workout pants 24/7. I'm always very lovely (slob) when I have to drop Keira off at preschool. *sigh*

The Laminator said... just captured my sentiments for the past week...I've blogged about running fast vs running old quite a few times this week.

Seriously, I think you're probably too harsh on yourself. You need to pick better fights. At least that's what I'd say =P

Leah said...

You're not the only 'momified' one out there...I have the exact same things in THE POCKETS of my oversized coat...sigh. It's the reason I NEVER look in store windows....

J said...

You are a great runner and on top of that you are mom!

I know what you mean about seeing yourself in the reflection and just going "ukkkk'!

I just got the Haruki Murakami book from the library! Hope yours comes soon - I hate being without stuff to read!

Diana said...

YOu will show them/yourself tomorrow. But, enjoy the day off for now!

They not only have the gift of youth, they have the gift of dumbness (remember how you were least I wasn't that smart), gift of denial (they'll feel those miles when they're older and have damaged their cartallige yet now they think they're invincible), etc. :) I wouldn't trade all the aches and pains for that. Seriously.

Anonymous said...

The dreaded momification. It happens in a blink of an eye! I think you deserve a new pair of jeans as well as a nice run!

It is amazing what happens once you have children! I am sure you look great.

Casey said...

I love this post. I hate when other runners mock me (but don't mock me, but I think they are mocking me).

However, I'm sure this one guy was totally mocking me: I still remember the time I was recovery-run/walking 1 week after completing my first half marathon. Just as I was starting a walk portion of my outing, some Fitty McFasterson passed me and shouted, "Aw, don't stop now! You haven't gone very far!"

I tripped him and then, as he was laying on his back, his smashed I-Pod groaning in defeat, I emptied out my last Gu pack on his face. Or at least, that's what I pictured myself doing as I stared at his toned, sweaty back get farther and farther away from me.

merathon said...

ditto to everyone else-- this was a great post. you put into words perfectly how i've felt a few times myself!

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