The Beauty of the Long Run

Long RunThere is a beauty in the long run. Today I got my last long run in ahead of the Master’s Games next Saturday. After so my grueling workouts, hills, sand sprints, strength training, and speed work days at the local high school track I was able to truly relish and enjoy my long run today.

After so many track workouts where I aimed to hit a certain split time, or complete a lap in X, I was able to simply just run today. It was a chance to throw numbers out the window, and serve as a catharsis.

Tomorrow my wife goes in for ankle surgery which I of course have been worried about. For the fifty minutes I ran (followed by 6 striders) I was able to block that out. I feel cleansed as a byproduct of a long run. It is a time to make peace with my failures as runner, but more importantly where I may fail as a husband and father. I usually come back fresh and recharged.

Today was not unusual in that respect. Part of my course took me to the local beach where I ran out to the pier where I could really finally feel the sun after a week of overcast days, chilly and rainy weather. While we may have been spared a rough winter here in Connecticut, this week and last sure felt like anything but May. It felt so amazing. I felt compelled to do something I never do during a run, and that was to simply stop and just be for a few moments. I snapped off a couple pics, of a lighthouse in the background, and Long Island Sound behind me.

I think that is where the beauty of the long run lies, in its ability to transform us physically and mentally and spiritually into better runners, but more importantly better people.  Some may scoff at “those crazy runners” out there running forever. I guess beauty is in the eye of the beholder or runner.