Sunday, July 25, 2010

Scenes From a Long Run

Fearful that the October marathon was closing due to an increase in entries this year, we signed up this past week.  All four of us-in order to run with the boys in tow, the strollers must have an official bib.   We normally don't sign up so early and I'm nervous.  A lot can happen between now and October.  I always feel a little more serious once it's official-and I'm worried that we won't be able to keep up with the mileage and the boys. I am finding that the run itself isn't so difficult anymore, but keeping up with a cruising baby and a very active four year old in the hours after a 16-20 mile run has been a challenge (on my tired legs). 

While we were running yesterday morning, I was thinking of how 'the run' has changed for me since pushing a stroller and came up with some thoughts on how I am learning to enjoy and think of this time much differently than in years past. 

I am no longer concerned with time and pace. When adding two more people into the mix of potty breaks, snack time, and hydration it has been next to impossible .  Unlike our adult mindset, potty breaks seem to be a fun adventure for a four year old and dropping a bottle along the road is just great entertainment for a baby.  This has been good for me as I have been noticing the beauty along our regular loop once again.  If I even start speeding up and getting a tad serious, I'm usually brought back to Earth by counting horses, looking for monkey trees and noticing the boats and ships along the river.  The view seems different and more colorful now.  And really, who needs time and pace when you can sing "If you're happy and you know it" and "The itsy bitsy spider?" 

Another big change I've become aware of-those motorists who feel the need to make comments as they drive past-I've been quite impressed that they have noticed the young ones in the stroller and have changed their tune from profanity to just regular old "Hey, you guys are crazy!".  I appreciate that they are watching their language now and would agree that we are a bit crazy.  No offense taken :)

There are some definite advantages to pushing a stroller as well.  The time spent driving out along the route and stashing water are gone, as we now have ample room for several water bottles,  diapers, first aid kits, sweaters, raincoats, cheerios, juice boxes, bananas, gloves, hats, toys, cameras and cell phones. I know that Daddy O rolls his eyes every time I run upstairs for an extra layer of clothing to put in the storage bin-but hey-you never know!

In any case, I am learning how to relax and enjoy the ride. I hope that we can run this marathon as a family, cheer other runners on and cross the finish line with smiles on our faces in October.  I want to say that we did it and we did it together.  There's still a long way to go but I will remain hopeful and the thought of having matching Family O running shirts keeps me going when inspiration runs low (there are just so many things we could do in this department-anybody have any good ideas?)

Mile # 2 & still happy. It can still be very cool here in the mornings and running along the river is even more so-we try to dress the boys in lots of layers.

Potty break and snack # 1 four miles in.

Mile eight and still going strong.

Potty break # 2 at around mile twelve.  He loves to wear my running jacket!

I don't even remember where we were at this point.  We try to switch strollers every few miles to ease the arm tension. I tend to have somewhat of a death grip on the stroller and my hands fall asleep.

Mile 16 and finished!  The first statement out of Boy O's mouth was "Can we ride bikes now Daddy?" . 


  1. I am SO amazed by this! Good job on keeping up something that you love and just learning to incorporate your kids into it! I have a really hard time doing've inspired me. (not to run though! lol)

  2. I too hope you can run this Marathon. Its amazing how you do it to me, because I huff and puff just walking Micah in the jogging stroller. Looking quiet sexy in your running outfit, sexy young mama:)))

  3. I follow your blog too!! And must say, WOW, you must have such well behaved boys! I could never envision my guys (though MAYBE megersa) staying put for that long! Good for you guys!! :) Love that you guys are such a happy family.

  4. super impressive! you go, girl (and guys!) I can't wait to hear about the race in october (and how cool for your boys- they can say they finished a marathon before they even started school! tee hee!)