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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

I Am No Runner

I am no runner. Occasionally, I dabble. Or, rather: trudge, stagger, gasp, wheeze, redden, and drip. I prefer to befriend (or marry) runners. I am not going to analyze how long I've been doing this or why. Mostly, I suppose, I admire runners and the principles behind being a runner – I just lack the motivation to actually be a serious runner.

I am no runner but I admire runners. I admire their commitment to stay physically fit – waking up early or running into the night to train, pushing their bodies to the level of fitness they were built for. I admire their ability to set a goal and to achieve that goal – running 5 Ks, 10 Ks, ½ marathons, marathons, pushing themselves to do better each time – to work harder, faster, stronger. These are traits I wish to emulate, at least vicariously while drinking coffee and eating a doughnut.

I am no runner but I can imagine what it is like to train for any marathon, especially one as prestigious as The Boston Marathon. I can imagine what it is like to run the fastest, farthest, and hardest you've ever run before – pushing past fatigue and discomfort – to approach the finish line after hours of physical exertion only to find out that you've inexplicably entered a war zone. In an instant, what should have been the proudest moment of your life became the most horrifying.

I am no runner but today I feel like running. Running to represent what the sport means to Americans – we are not gluttonous, over-consuming, fat, and lazy – we are people that work hard and achieve our goals. We run because we can – even if it is hard, even if it means we have to overcome physical and mental obstacles.
 I am no runner but my heart goes out to them today – to the people who worked for weeks, months, years to run in The Boston Marathon, to the spectators cheering their friends and family on, to the people of Boston. I pray for them. I pray for us all.

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