Saturday, August 22, 2015

My Running Chronicles: Seven Sweet and Sweaty Miles - Team McManus on the Road to the Bermuda Half Marathon



What makes the hard runs so great is that it makes the easier runs so much sweeter! Not that today's 7 miles was an easy run by any stretch of the imagination. Tom planned out our course which is one of his all time favorite 7 mile runs. Until today I hadn't been able to run this course with him! We'd been packing up the car and heading out to South Boston for our long runs and today decided to change it up. What an amazing feeling to walk out of our front door and go on a run. Yes we've done it a lot of times before but today's run felt like my first real long run ever.

There's been a profound shift in me mind, body and Spirit. With the help of Jeffrey Spratt, LMT, I am able to leave my past behind. He is the first muscular therapist that I have worked with who knows what runners and people who have experienced trauma need in a treatment to reclaim their lives and reclaim their advantage.

Ever since I began to run in March of 2008, I fell in love with the sport. It was a huge struggle for me to run but as I built up my miles on the road to the Boston Marathon, I knew that running was and is my therapy, my medicine, my life saver.

"I want you to run unencumbered," Jeffrey said to me at the end of our first treatment. Even though I'd written poems - many poems - about running unencumbered as well as reclaiming my life, I had no idea how to get from where I was to there.

While I have had some wonderful runs, I must say today was my best run ever-hands down...perhaps it was because the weather was cooler than we have run in the past few weeks. Perhaps I felt so much better in my body after Thursday's treatment with Jeffrey and having recovered from last week's fall. I also suspect it had a lot to do with the running affirmations I wrote and am reading and re-reading to reprogram myself away from believing that I deserve pain and punishment and having untoward things happen to me to knowing in every fiber of my being that I deserve to feel good in my body and to run unencumbered.

The course that Tom planned out for us took us from our home in Brookline to Jamaica Pond and through this beautiful path by the Muddy River. Being among trees, water, birds, geese and having my beloved tour guide share his joy that he felt while he ran it which was now multiplied because I was running unencumbered by his side.

There were moments when I was overcome by emotion feeling so deeply grateful for my life and our life together. As we came into the finish of our run, we once again imagined how it is going to feel on Front Street coming into the finish chute. I get goosebumps as I write this.

The miles seemed to literally fly by even though our overall time and pace was slower than last week because of the hills and more hills and oh did I mention there were hills on this run?

Part of the course was a loop around Jamaica Pond; my happy place where we spent many many many miles training for Boston in the fall and winter of 2008. I always think of Bill Rodgers when we run there because that is where he trained for Boston.

When we got home we refueled with an orange, I had my ice bath and then we thoroughly enjoyed burritos from Boloco. I opted for the chicken teriyaki with steamed carrots, brown rice and broccoli. I took a shower and was going to write my blog but I hit the wall and realized I needed a power nap. I stated my mantra, "My body recovers from long runs and workouts with ease." With a little help from a nap of course...

Our first sweet and sweaty miles (because of the humidity) since 2009....it all feels the same yet entirely different. That delicious feeling of being One with all that is on a run and feeling the sense of satisfaction after completing a long run remains. Now Jeffrey's intention that I run unencumbered is manifesting in reality. I know it's only going to get better and better as Team McManus travels on the road to the Bermuda Half Marathon.





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