Monday, May 9, 2011

Support Is Key To Success

The number 2 item on my ‘Running’ packing list is a sports bra. So it boggles my mind how on a recent trip, I forgot to pack one. On the other hand, I had remembered to pack my Ace bandage in case I injured my ankle.
I was at my parent’s house and my always resourceful mother suggested using the bandage as a suitable bra replacement. She did the honors of wrapping me up. I remember it like the scene where Mammy ties Scarlett O’Hara’s corset.
If a sports bra, is number 2 on my ‘Running’ list, then number 1 has to be my shoes. Not just any old pair of sneakers will do. A good pair of running shoes are essential to keep injuries at bay. A good running shoe helps absorb the shock of pounding the pavement and prevents sore knees and painful joints.
As far as gear goes, those are the only two essential items a female runner needs.  But to be a runner, to enjoy running, to make it a part of your lifestyle, you need a lot of support from your family and friends, especially your spouse.
Running, especially long distance running, which I enjoy, takes a lot of time. My family knows and understands that any events, parties, lunches, or dinners need to be planned with my running schedule in mind. Well, maybe they just tolerate me because I’m family! Regardless, I appreciate all their consideration. With their support, I can make time to run and keep it a priority.
Keeping running a priority with a baby is not an easy thing to do. Before my daughter, I could pretty much run whenever and for however long I wanted. Now my runs are scheduled around Makayla. At first, when I ran was determined by her nursing schedule. When she was a little older, I ran during her naptime so she would sleep and not fuss in the stroller.
Now that she is three, she decides when we go for a run or even whether she wants to go with me or not. When she does go, it takes me an hour to make it out the door, but when she doesn’t go, I have to find someone to sit with her while I run –an extra challenge during the winter months.
I prefer to run in daylight. I just feel safer, but I’m not opposed to running in the dark. When the hours of daylight dwindled, my sister would sit with Makayla after she got off work at 4pm so that I could get a run in before it was really dark. I know my sister was anxious to get home and unwind after a long day, but she understands how much running means to me and this was her way of supporting me.
On Saturdays, my husband supports my three hour long runs by taking Makayla with him on errands. He realizes the benefits to running beyond the physical including more energy, a positive attitude, and confidence in all areas of my life. Running helps me be a better wife, mother and woman. I’m blessed with a husband who generously encourages me.
He is even willing to plan a vacation around a race I want to run! Now that’s a supportive husband! I know that no matter how fast I run, my husband and daughter will be cheering me on and waiting with open arms and huge smiles at the finish line. Without their support, I couldn’t indulge my passion for running like I do. I’m extremely grateful!
I’m also really looking forward to a 10k (6.2 miles) course over magnificent, rolling, protected hiking trails on the scenic south end of Block Island this Saturday. 
*Originally posted on Pocketful of Playdough

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