Runners Viewed from the Van Window

Having never been an athlete, I’ve always had opinion of runners that vacillates between admiration (“Wow, that’s dedication“) and scorn (“What idiots! Who runs outside in this weather?“), depending on my mood.

So it was out of character for me to sign up for a Couch to 5K program and (here’s the out of character part) STICK WITH IT. I was reminded of this during a text exchange with a friend who knows me too well and shares the same mix of assumptions about runners.

Friend: Where are you? Lunch soon?

Me: Believe it or not, just went running. Doing a couch to 5K – mostly the couch side.

Friend: WHAT? You’re my hero! Along the parkway? Among the fit, beautiful people?

Me: Yes, the awkward one huffing and dragging behind.

Friend: Roast, green beans, and Parker House rolls prep for dinner as well?

Me: More like frozen pizza. But yes, for a brief  moment, was one of  THOSE people.

Friend: I’m sure I saw you. You all were running effortlessly, hair shining, laughing into the wind.

You didn’t see me, made sure of it. I was the one driving by in the dirty van, being sure to scrunch my Taco Bell sack below the window so nobody could see it.

I shoved my Icee between my thighs & sped away in shame.

Me:  LOL! And I’m sipping a mocha at Starbucks as a reward. Grande.

Reminds me, must be sure to dispose of candy wrappers in car.Will blame on the kids.

For all you “beautiful people” who run (and all runners are assumed to be beautiful people who have dinner handled), keep going. The rest of us need the inspiration, even if it just reflects our own insecurities.

Note: Running has raised my awareness of pedestrian traffic. Recent tragedies remind us all that we can never be too careful.