Thursday, October 25, 2018


"Some days it just flows and I feel like I’m born to do this, other days it feels like I’m trudging through hell. Every day I make the choice to show up and see what I’ve got, and to try and be better.  My advice: keep showing up."
~ Des Linden

This past Saturday, I woke up early and headed over to LHS as our girls XC team would be racing at the Catholic Memorial Invitational at Franklin park later that morning.  The distraction was exactly what I needed as I would be lining up for my 22nd marathon the next day and I honestly didn't want to think (er...stress) about it if I didn't have to.  The Lex girls ran their brains out and completely crushed it, handily taking the win and far exceeding my expectations; something they've been doing a lot this season.  I was so proud of them and incredibly inspired by their performance, as I often am.  It was quite a boost for all of us and exactly the motivation I needed as I switched gears to focus on my marathon for the rest of the afternoon.


I got home around 1:30, quickly shoveled a sandwich into my mouth and then, as promised, made my way back out to take Grace, Rosie and their friend, Caroline to Party City so the girls could get the final pieces for their Halloween costumes.  Probably not the ideal pre-marathon agenda but Grace, in particular, likes to plan and wouldn't relax and until she had all the accessories she needed for her Jellyfish.  No rest for the weary, right?  As we pulled into the parking lot, Rosie mentioned that she'd like to shop for jeans and asked if she could hit Marshalls while we were in Party City.  My knee jerk reaction was...Really?  Jeans??  Today??  But, she, too, was goal oriented and, in fairness to her, she did need some additions to her wardrobe.  Okay so costumes, check....

Hmmm. Blue hair spray? Silver eyelashes?

and jeans, also check.  Three pairs actually. Yes, I am a sucker.  And I really just wanted to get out of there.  So, Rosie won.

Rosie's wearing my shorts.  Jeans clearly needed.

I dropped all the girls off around 3:00 and then turned around and went back out again, this time to Chelmsford to pick up my race bib so I wouldn't have to deal with it the next morning.  It was about an hour trip all in but totally worth it to help keep the stress at bay.  Then finally, around 4:30pm, I put my feet up and attempted to relax and get myself mentally prepared for the next day.


I got in bed around 8:30 and read for a bit, trying to settle my nerves and praying for sleep to come.  Sunday morning, as I'd done all week, I woke up at a ridiculous hour - 4:45am - and couldn't get doze back off.  So, I got out of bed at 5:00 and started my traditional pre-race routine: make coffee, feed Clover, chill on front porch and zone out for a bit.  After having run several marathons these past few years in locations that have required planes, trains, automobiles and hotels, I can't tell you how nice it was to sleep in my own bed and wake up without an ounce of worry as to whether or not the guy who was supposed to be coming in early to make coffee would actually show up for his job.  Eh hmm.  That was at Sugarloaf and, no, he did not show up.  I will never forgive him.

Coffee for me. Rabbit patrol for Clover.

Given the time, it was basically pitch black out, but the temp was relatively mild and the fresh air felt good, so it didn't stop us from having our porch session.  After a walk and some last minute organization, I got in my car around 6:30 and drove out to Lowell where the race would be starting.  The race organizer had suggested we arrive 2 hours beforehand, which I thought was nuts.  But, then when I got there I had to wait in line to get into the parking garage, a line that was moving at a snail's pace, so I understood why he'd made that suggestion.  I didn't panic at this point, but I was grateful that I'd already dealt with my bib so I could just park and start my warm up.  

Surprise hug from Liz

Shortly after I walked out of the garage and started toward the arena I ran into my dear friend and Oiselle teammate, Liz.  It was so nice to see a familiar face as my nerves were officially in high gear and a hug was both welcome and appreciated.  Liz just ran a marathon, like a week ago, and decided to just "jump in" to Baystate to see how it would go.  She's crazy badass!  We said goodbye and I found an enclosed area to put my stuff down and do some drills.  The wind, which I hadn't thought would be a factor, was now picking up and very clearly going to be a factor.  Awesome.  At 7:45, I took off all my layers and handed my bag over to gear check.  Just as I set out to the start I realized I'd forgotten to pull my gels out of my bag before I checked it.  SHIT.  I ran back and asked them to dig it back up.  They were not thrilled as it was in a very big pile and my bag was a small, white plastic grocery bag.  Fortunately, they were able to find it and I thanked them profusely despite their eye rolls.  Okay, so up until this point the only two somewhat minor issues that I'd had to deal with were the line for parking and forgetting my fuel.  Overall, not too bad as I've dealt with a lot worse.  I walked over to the start and tried to find the 3:00 pacer, a new pace option this year.  A lot of people were trying to qualify for Boston with this race and the qualifications have gotten tougher, so they added a few extra pace groups at those faster times in order to help rabbit folks along.  Lucky for me.  The day before I'd talked to my coach, Lowell, about starting out with the 3 hour pace group so I didn't go out too fast or worry about my watch in the beginning and we decided it was a good strategy.  It was now very, very cold and the wind was in full force.  The gentleman next to me told me I looked freezing (I was) and offered me his hand warmers, which I happily accepted.  Bless the running community, you know?  Always ready and willing to help each other out.  I tucked those puppies into my palms and squeezed them tight for warmth.  About 5 minutes before the start I tossed my t-shirt, an oldie but goodie that I didn't think I'd need earlier that morning.  RIP purple Oiselle 'FLY' shirt.  Hope you go to a nice new home.  Finally, at 8:00am, it was go time.

One of my goals, as you likely know if you've been reading this blog lately, was to run this marathon in under 3 hours.  But, it was also to run smart, try and place in the Masters category (40+) and have fun.  As I mentioned, Lowell (yes, my coach happens to have the same name as the host city of the marathon.  Odd, no?) and I had talked the day before.  In a nutshell he told me that I should not focus on my overall finish time when I lined up but just to take one mile at a time; to break it up into little pieces.  That, he told me, is what it is going to take for you to get the job done.  He also told me I was ready and I just needed to go out there an execute.  Cool.  No problem.  Just freaking do it.  Later that afternoon I texted him in a panic because the weather had turned and was showing wind and rain.  WTF???!!!  You can't control Mother Nature he said.  The training is in the bank and you have sub 3 fitness.  Tuck behind someone when the wind is in your face as much as you can but you are going to get this done.  Yes.  Okay.  Trust the Sensei.  We got this.

3 Hour Pace Group

Mile 1-6 (6:40, 6:42, 6:47, 6:59, 6:40, 6:51)
Shortly after the gun blew I sought out the 3 hour pacer as I'd seen him briefly before we got going but did not start directly behind him.  It took me a little effort to catch up to him which explains the fast-ish start but after a couple miles I settled into the group as planned.  At mile 4 I reached out for a cup of Gatorade and it fell out of my hands.  I'd seen the guy in front of me successfully take one, so I just went ahead and asked him if I could have a sip of his if he had any extra when he was done.  I've never done anything like this before.  But, I had my eyes on the prize and I needed those calories, dammit.  He took what he needed and then passed it back to me.  BLESS HIM.  I thanked him and took a sip and then the guy next to me reached out for it, so I gladly passed it over.  I mean...come on.  Does it get any better than that?  We were all in this together.  I felt the love.  

Cruising w/ Brian

Mile 7-13 (6:45, 6:53, 6:54, 6:50, 6:46, 6:49, 6:52)
I worked hard to zone in on a rhythm for these miles and tried not to pay attention the mile markers.  Our pack stayed together for a while and continued to help each other out at water stops, mainly moving out of the way when we'd gotten what we'd needed.  During this stretch I hooked up with my friend and fellow coach from Wilmington, Brian Schell (#470).  I've done a couple other races with him but he's often aiming for a 5K PR so I was surprised to see him out there.  He let me know he was shooting for a BQ and needed to run under 3 hours as well.  Perfecto.  We fell right into pace with each other and settled in.  I was feeling rock solid.  I was hitting the splits plus or minus 10 seconds depending on the wind and who was in front of me.  I was lucid and mentally on my game.  I was pretending that I was doing a tempo workout and that the race hadn't even begun yet.  I didn't want any false confidence at this point as I knew there was a lot of work to do.

Rollin' (Pacers in orange behind us)

Mile 13-22 (6:52, 6:47, 6:46, 6:54, 6:49, 7:00, 6:52, 6:47, 6:54, 6:49)
Brian and I were just rolling along now.  He actually knew I'd been chasing a sub-3 for a few years as we'd talked about our goals more than once.  I'm pretty sure this is why he would jump in front of me when the wind picked up to offer a little shield.  He's not much bigger than me but it made a monumental difference, probably as much mentally as physically.  I was thanking him repeatedly as we ran, just so incredibly grateful to have his help out there and to have a wingman in general.  Things were getting tough now.  I was still holding on well and felt strong but the wind on this stretch was a beast right up until we crossed the bridge at mile 17.  I wasn't super worried about it yet in regards to my time, but it was definitely on my mind and I knew it was starting to wear on me physically.  Just beyond the halfway point the guy who'd been pacing us passed the sign off to the woman next him who I then realized would be taking over for him for the rest of the race.  Brian and I ebbed and flowed in front of and behind the group with each mile.  We seemed to be steady and they seemed to be picking up and pulling back.  But, I felt that if we could just keep them in our sites we were good to go.  Around mile 20, Brian let me know that his hamstring was seizing and that he was going to have to pull back.  He told me to go ahead.  I felt awful for him and was sad that we wouldn't be finishing together.  I was also a little nervous to have to battle through the rest alone.  Therein lies the marathon, though.  You never know how things are going to go down and you have to be prepared for that.  We wished each other well and I continued on solo.

Miles 22-26.2 (6:49, 6:46, 6:55, 6:54, 7:13)
So here is where the race began.  And I was basically on my own.  My average pace was showing 6:48 which was exactly where I needed to be.  Close to my target with a little cushion.  I did a mental check here.  Yes, I was wiped.  Yes, my legs hurt.  But, I was still holding it together.  I had one last GU to take if needed and I had 4.2 measly miles to get done.  FOUR.  That was it.  I had done four mile runs in my sleep during training.  There was a lot self talk at this point.  Okay, Rebecca, time to dig in.  Time to get gritty.  No excuses.  Let's just get this thing done.  And so on.  I was starting to get nervous at this point because the pacer was slightly ahead of me and I couldn't reel her in.  I began to worry that my watch was wrong and that maybe I didn't have the buffer I thought I did.  But, at the same time, I knew she hadn't started pacing until the second half and wondered if maybe she was fresher and just running a bit faster than she needed to.  Talk about a mind f***.  I checked my watch at each mile and the distances were matching up, so I had to believe my time was right and just tried to focus on myself and not her.  She did throw out some words of encouragement which I appreciated though I think I would have been better off had she not been there at all as I was wasting energy on the situation and was annoyed with myself because of it.  Around mile 25 my overall average had jumped up to 6:49.  SHIT.  I was still well within range (2:59:59 is a 6:52 average), but I had absolutely no room for error now.  My legs were hurting so much.  I was willing them to move faster but they were telling me to F off.  Every step was torture; just picking up my feet was ridiculously difficult.  At mile 26 I saw my dear friend Kelly and she was screaming her head off, telling me I needed to get moving.  Yes, she also knew about my time goal.  I happened to look down to see a text on my watch from someone who was tracking me that said, YOU'VE GOT THIS, BUT YOU GOTTA GO NOW TRAX!!!  Sweet Pete.  I had nothing left in the tank and yet I had to find something.  I took the last turn and looked to see the time on my watch switch from 2:58 to 2:59.  Oh I was freaking out.  I just threw down whatever I had left, which you can see from my last mile split was not much.  And then I saw it.  I saw the official clock.  And the finish line.  And I was pretty sure it was there.  A fat smile spread across my face.  And I lifted my hands up in joy.  HOLY CRAP. This was happening.


Wait...was it happening?  I had crossed the line but I wasn't 100% sure, hence the nervous expression on my face below.  I needed confirmation before I let the tears fly.


and there it was.  I saw a 2 on the clock.  It was official.  I'd done it.  This was the day.  My day.  I'd run a sub 3 hour marathon.  Hallelujah.  Praise be.  And cue the water works.


The relief poured through me.  I couldn't believe it.  I was crying like an overtired toddler; snot flying and tears streaming.  One of the EMTs asked me if everything was okay.  Yes, I slobbered, I'm ok.  Just happy.  Three years and nine tries.  So much work.  Countless miles.  Heartbreak.  Doubt.  Injuries.  I've dealt with everything.  Tried everything.  And still, despite all that hadn't gone right, I kept lining up because I wanted it more than anything.  And it had finally all come together.  It was just the sweetest moment for me.  Worth every single day I'd given to this goal and then some.

I walked through the chute, quickly found Jeff and the girls and went in for a hug, my messy toddler crying starting all over again.  Rosie and Grace weren't quite sure how to respond as they've never seen me in this state, but Jeff got it.  He squeezed me so tight.  Probably as relieved as I was.  Probably more so.  There is no way to put into words the joy I felt here, just having achieved my goal and being surrounded by my family.  It was everything.  I threw on all my clothes and we all walked back to the garage where we'd parked.  Again, the beauty of a local race?  I got to jet home, take a hot shower and plant myself on the couch for the rest of the afternoon.  Please and thank you.

Shortly after I got back my friend, Cecille, dropped off this beauty; a gift from a group of my Oiselle teammates.  And, once again, cue the tears.  But seriously, this journey has been with them and with so many other people.  My friends, my family, everyone has been along for the ride in some way.  I'm guessing half of the GD running community is relived to know that I finally did it.  What I'll say is this, there is absolutely no way I could have reached this goal without the people who have been supporting me along the way.  You can't do this stuff alone.  It's just not possible.  You need others to pick you up when you're down, cheer you on, relate to your experiences, tell you it's worth when you're doubting it; remind you why you do it day in and day out.  In the words of the great Eliud Kipchoge,
"It’s really a circle.  You cannot train alone and expect to run a fast time.  There’s a formula:100% of me is nothing compared to 1% of the whole team.  And that’s teamwork.  That's what I value."
There is so much truth to this.  My husband, my kids, my coach, my LHS athletes, my co-workers, my friends, my teammates; even those who I've never met but with whom I've connected while on this journey.  They are my team.  And I am nothing without them.  My success on Sunday is as much theirs as it is mine.  I am forever in their debt for all they have done for me and the strength and love they have given me over the years.  I have learned a valuable lesson during this very, very long process.  I proved to myself and to anyone else out there who may have doubts about whether their big, scary goals are attainable, that there is almost always a way to get it done if you want it badly enough.  I hate to sound cliché but there is just no other way to lay it out there.  Yes, it may take longer.  Yes, you may have to get creative, work a little harder, sacrifice a little more, and, at times, trick yourself into believing the unbelievable.  But hell if I haven't made it clear to all of us that, again cliché, where there is a will, there is a way.  So, what now?  Well, I suppose this particular chapter is finally closed.  But the story?  That is still unfolding, my friends.  Stay tuned, there's definitely more to come.

Listen to this:
Moment - Mikky Ekko

Friday, October 19, 2018


"The person who gets the farthest is generally the person who is willing to do & dare."
~ Dale Carnegie

So, there is this guy.  His name is Brian.  Like me, he's married with kids.  Like me, he's trying to break three hours in the marathon.  Like me he works, parents and trains 24/7.  Unlike me he's a world record holder.  Also, unlike me, he doesn't eat sweets.  Oh, and there's one more thing, he happens to be a double amputee.  In his world, and mine, this doesn't seem to be an issue.  It's not a reason or an excuse.  It just is what it is.  I stumbled on Brian's Instagram account this year after he completed the Chicago Marathon, the race where he set his world record.  His grit and determination are immeasurable.  His dreams are big.  And his drive is going to take him to places most of us will never go.  I needed to know this guy.  I wanted to connect with him and learn more about his story, which is pretty mind blowing.  In his own words:

I am a double amputee distance runner.  I hold the world record in the marathon (3 hours 3 minutes 22 sec Chicago 2018) for double below the knee amputees.  Additionally, I am the overall fastest American amputee.  One of my big goals in running is to break 3 hours in the marathon.  I came close to the goal in Chicago but fell at mile 22 and sustained a concussion.  I will most certainly be making another attempt in the future. 

Music has always held a special place in my heart.  My family is full of Irish musicians.  My grandfather was an extremely well renowned Irish fiddler and he passed on his love of music to his children.  My father has played in various bands my entire life.  He is one of the most talented and passionate musicians I know.  Though I listen to many different kinds of music, both recorded and live, to this day I have not found any music more inspiring than listening to him play.  He is a true musical genius and can play any instrument that is handed to him.  His main instrument of choice is the Irish button accordion.  Though I have tried over the years to play various instruments, I have never had the innate talent of my father and in the end I prefer to listen to him play for hours on end.  His recordings take up endless amounts of hours of music on my phone.  Growing up listening to Irish music has left me with a deep love of the Irish genre and it will be something I always come back to.

Running.  Check.  Music.  Check.  Awesome.  Check and check.  This guy is the full package.  I am so excited to follow along as he continues to aim for his goal, which I have absolutely know doubt he will reach and eventually crush.  He is the first of all the people I've profiled here who doesn't eat ice cream.  Like, at all.  For no reason other than he just doesn't like sweets.  Just...crazy!  But then, he'd want to have dinner with Aerosmith and run a marathon with Metallica playing along, so he's clearly not totally nuts.  Kidding, of course.  Huge thanks to Brian for taking the time to share his story with me.  I wish him the best of luck as he continues down this path toward even more greatness.  So, here he is my friends; meet Brian Reynolds, a runner who rocks.


Name: Brian Reynolds
Where you're from: Boston MA
Where you reside now: Bloomfield NJ
Age (if you're ok sharing): 30
Occupation: Manager at the Sneaker Factory
Instagram: @brianreynoldsrunner *
*website will be up and running by next week

Brian & his family

What do you love most about running? 
Running is time for me to clear my head and meditate.  It helps me de-stress.  I love both the times where I can run in quiet solitude and the times where I run with friends.  Running has taught me discipline, perverseness, and determination.  It has shown me that I can be brave and tough when I need to push through rough patches in races and training.  Most importantly running has given me a freeing sensation that I did not think possible.  The first time I pulled on my running blades I felt like I was flying, even years later I still get that feeling every time I run.

What do you love most about music? 
Music has been a part of my life since a very young age.  With my father playing in bands my entire life, I spent much of the time in my formative years traveling to hear him play.  They are some of my fondest childhood memories and I still cherish the moments I get to hear him play now.  Now, as an adult, music still plays a large roll in my life.  I have wide and varied taste in music. I still spend lots of time listening to Irish music and hope that exposing my children to it will give them a love for it as well.  While running I often listen to Irish music, the meditative rhythm can carry me for hours as the miles slip away.  

at Chicago w/ Jim (aka @stanbluejay on IG)

Band (current, all time or both): Tara Hill Band & the Eagles
Album (current, all time or both): Metallica, Master of Puppets & Reload
Race venue: Chicago Marathon
Music venue: the local Irish bar
Race distance: depends on the month & my current mood. Right now I am sick of marathon training so the half is my favorite.
Show you've seen live? Aerosmith, although Metallica is my favorite so far.
Ice cream flavor? I do not eat ice cream.  Favorite post-race treat is watermelon. About the closest I come to dessert is Green and Blacks organic 85% dark chocolate. And after marathons usually beer is a big treat for me seeing as I don't drink any other time.

Sweet or salty? Neither really. If I had to choose I guess salty. I am not much of a sweets or candy person
Live or recorded? Live 
Coffee or tea? I have a strong Irish upbringing so most certainly Tea, and I have never had a single sip of coffee!
Summer or winter? I love both seasons and couldn't pick one over the other. Cold runs are just as much fun as sweltering runs!

Which band or artist would you go see tonight if you could? The Eagles 
Which band or artist (wait...but no longer alive or playing together) would you go see tonight if you could? The Tara Hill Band. It was one of the bands my dad was in when I was a child. It also included my grandfather and 2 uncles. Their only cd remains my all time favorite album to this day
Which band or artist would you like to have dinner with tonight if you could? Aerosmith, I bet they all have some crazy and entertaining stories
Which band or artist would you like to be playing alongside you during your
next race (or long run)? Metallica, they all have so much energy. I think it would really give me the energy to grinding through the tough parts in the marathon!


Today, I feel like....(fill in the blank)
With 2 kids, full time work and full time training.... I always feel like I need more sleep!

Young Brian

Top 5 Songs for running, dancing or both: 
All running songs, I am not much of a dancer.
Better than You - Metallica
Give Me Fuel Give Me Fire - Metallica
Mi Mi Mi - Serebro
Rooftops - Lost Prophets
Danza Kuduro - Don Omar

Last 5 Songs you listened to today: 
Haven't had a chance to listen to anything today! All work and phone calls!

"The first time I pulled on my running blades I felt like I was flying, even years later I still get that feeling every time I run."
Brian Reynolds

Listen to this:
Mi Mi Mi - Serebro

Friday, October 12, 2018


"But of course the race itself is the smallest part of the story.  It is the journey that is important; the everyday, the day in, day out. Start and finish lines are just steps on that journey. The prize is not a position, or a time; instead the getting to know myself, the work and the training must be its own reward." 
~ Lizzy Hawker, 5-time UTMB winner

So next Sunday, October 21st, assuming I don't try any new gymnastics moves or run into any random doors, I'll be lining up for my 22nd marathon, the Baystate in Lowell, MA.  I'm pretty excited for this one for several reasons.  First, it's in my neck of the woods.  It's been a long time since I haven't had to travel via plane or a very long car ride for a marathon, a process that can be both stressful and exhausting.  Second, the weekend and race day logistics will likely be pretty manageable for a change.  I get to sleep in my own bed the night before, eat my own food all weekend, make my pre-race coffee the way I like it; basically many of the variables that can often be a question mark will, for the most part, be under my control.  And finally, I am coming full circle on this one.  Baystate was my first marathon back in 2007.  As far as marathoning goes, I was as green as Kermit.  I took very little fluids during the race, I didn't know what gels were and I'm not even sure I did a 20 miler beforehand.  Needless to say, the final eight miles were excruciating.  Despite the fact that it was eleven years ago, I remember that feeling of "bonking" and then the proverbial wheels falling off like it was yesterday.  I won't deny that anything can happen on race day, but I have to believe this time around will be a little different from my first rodeo.  Knock on wood.  I always train hard for each marathon that I tackle.  Most of us do.  But I definitely took it to a new level for this one.  More miles than ever.  Multiple double sessions every week.  Tougher and longer workouts.  You name it, my coach threw it at me.  Funny story, back on June 8th. I noticed the shift and sent him an email about it:

Hey Lowell,
Just curious....if we're already at 70 miles per week in June, where are we going to be in September??  Not that I'm not up for it.  But still. :)

His response was this:

It wasn't so long ago that you came to me peaking at 50mpw and a long 
run of 21 miles.  Despite some injury concerns over the years, for the 
most part you have handled a steady gradual increase in volume.  There 
is work to do and as long as you have time and the physical ability to 
tolerate the miles, I want to continue to nudge them up.  You good with 
~ Lowell

Translation, trust me.  And, yes, we're doing this.  Perhaps he thought it best not to mention how far he planned to take my mileage at that point.  Probably a good call.  I had to laugh a little.  To be honest, though, at the time I wasn't sure if I would be able to get through it.  I did have some bleeps on the radar; some plantar fasciitis flare ups over the summer, a pulled hamstring and a few other, smaller but notable physical and mental hurdles.  But for the most part, I've made it to the end.  I have a little over a week to go.  The hay, as they say, is in the barn.  My friend Clarissa, also a marathoner and a total badass, posted the quote from the top on Instagram about a year ago.  I took a screenshot of it and save it in my photos.  It really resonated with me back then.  But it is hitting home even more so now.  The journey, the training and all that is wrapped up in it, is truly what it's all about.  I know this now.  I thrive on the day to day.  Crave it, actually.  The race will be over.  But the story will never end.  New day.  New chapter.  Same story.


Weeks in this training cycle: 25 (May-October)
Total miles run: 1,611.5
Months w/ mileage over 300: 3* 
*July-September. June was 299 but clearly I didn't care enough to run the extra one.
Number of 20+ mile runs: 9*
*should have been 10 but I stupidly attempted a handstand in August.
Races since May: 5 (2 x 13.1, 1 relay, 2 x 8K)
Number of times it has been hot, rainy and/or humid on workout days: 
I can't remember when it wasn't.
Pairs of running shoes I've gone through: 4
Playlists created: 8* 
*one for each race, one for summer, one for a friend & an epic dance mix 
Tubes of NUUN: 16* 
*saved them for my girls who used them for storage & arts & crafts projects
Ice cream cones: too many to count
Cups of coffee: same as above
Live music shows: 3
*Imagine Dragons, Grace Vanderwaal, Fitness
Successful Handstands: NONE

Listen to this:
It's Just The Start - Royal Teeth

Friday, October 5, 2018


Nature's gift to us,
Is what we take for granted,
Let us treasure it!
    – Aditi Subramanian, age 8

It's Tuesday at 8:15am.  Yesterday I ran 24 miles, my last long run of this training cycle.  Today, I'm so tired it hurts.  I've had coffee.  Doesn't matter.  My lids are so heavy.  I'm struggling to keep them open.  And my legs.  Oh, my legs.  I text my coach.  Is this normal?  Should I be worried?  I ask.  It's okay he says  Your legs will come back he reminds me.  Will they?  I have a second cup of coffee.  Better.  But still.  I need more help.  I call Kirsten.  She gets it.  She's there, too.  Get in your car and drive to your run today  she says.  You need to change locations, mix it up.  Go over to the bike path in Lexington.  Take the thought out of planning your route.  Put your music on and zone out.  Come on, Bec.  You got this.  Okay.  Yes, I nod in agreement.  I can do this.  One step.  Two steps.  A little more effort.  And a maybe a little magic. 

I am alone with many thoughts.  I take in all the elements.  I can fly, soar through the air.  Nothing can stop me now that I fly.  It's a wonderful break I've found from reality.  I feel good about myself.  I laugh and smile.  Do one more mile.  My forward path narrows.  I turn around.  My end has become my beginning.  This path has granted me peace.  I have caught bikeway magic.  Lucky me.

Listen to this:
Every Step That I Take - Tom Morello (feat. Portugal. The Man)