Okay, well I've been clear that I don't always love to run and my biggest obstacle has been my monkey brain. However, for the record, I would like to say that running is my favorite. I love everything about it. And Day 2 of running camp reinforced that feeling.
We started with an easy run on a trail outside of Boulder, Colorado. Despite the early arrival there were no parking spots at the trailhead because it seems that everyone in Boulder, Colorado was out running. So we parked a mile or so away and shuttled runners to the trail. I don't know why it made me so happy to have my backseat full of runners, but it did. It made me think that I could have a side business shuttling runners to and from their cars on Saturday mornings and never find happier work in my lifetime.
Next was the run itself, which was a lot of walking up the trail and getting to know fellow run campers, and then running down to test the legs. The thing I'm most curious about is how people found their way to the running camp--inevitably our stories are revealed there, too. The bottom line is they are hungry for more--more from their running and more from their lives--and it's inspiring to be around. And, as always, my assumption was confirmed: runners are good (and interesting!) people.
Next up was lunch at the team house (and how fun is it to be a part of a team?!), followed by a podcast taping with five of the coaches, followed by a pretty amazing reflection workshop by Jake, who leads Endeavorun. Reflecting on the barriers to success that we put up for ourselves, especially the ones that might be tucked away just out of sight, is so valuable, and to have someone lead you through that kind of exercise with expertise and hand it off as a tool that you can come back to and use again and again is worth its' weight in gold. I looked around at that room of runners listening intently and working earnestly and I was so grateful to be among people who want to learn and be better.
Last but not least the evening ended with the Pearl Street Mile in Boulder. The event goes on for four and a half hours, starting with a kids race, an open heat, time based 1 mile waves, masters, and then concludes with the elite waves. The runners complete 3.75 laps, so we got four views of them running through the shoot with spectators cheering on both sides. We were in very close proximity to the runners so you could clearly see their faces, and it was such a cool thing to witness. I'm not sure if there is anything in running that hurts more than racing a mile. And although you could see the pain of it on their faces, the locked in determination in their eyes just filled me with hope and inspiration. It made me glad to be a runner.
We got ice cream and walked back to the team house as a group--a happy, energized group. I had conversations about pacing, learning to run by feel, and the idea of resting until you're ready between intervals. We talked about how cool it was to be so up close and personal to those runners giving their absolute all to run a mile. I was thinking about how, even though we can analyze and reflect and mostly know why we do this, when I picture those milers' faces going past me there is still a pinch of mystery that we cannot touch in this whole thing. I felt so grateful and such a sense of belonging in that moment, exhausted from the day and walking back with my team. If someone asked me to sum up the day in one sentence it would be this:
Running is my favorite.