Remember that thing that was so hot for a while, "running?"
For real, I haven't run more than a couple times since the Tobacco Road Marathon.
One of the things that makes me feel like I'm not a "real" runner is the way I can drop running without a thought. Sure, I miss it, but I didn't feel that total collapse of identity some people describe when they stop running. I'm content with anything that's outside that lets me move my body: biking, walking (really), hiking, running, swimming in the quarry, gardening, etc. And my interest in running, specifically, waxes and wanes with the seasons: In the summer, it feels like a death march.
I've been riding my bike a lot, but riding to work when it is nearly 100 degrees out is like opening the door of a convection oven with hot, oppressive air rushing at my face.
Each time I tried to go for a run, my knee flared up and I couldn't make it past 2 or 3 miles. I didn't mind that much -- if it needed rest, I was totally fine to just give it more rest.
Then it was time to get married. Our wedding was in early May, and while a wedding seems like the kind of life event that is nearly certain to disappoint (it's expensive, overhyped, and laden with familial and emotional significance) it absolutely didn't. In fact, it really was, as they say, the happiest day of my entire life. I've thought a few times about writing about it here, but I've never been that comfortable with unreciprocated sharing, and I'd have to share a whole lot to really do justice to the story. Maybe someday.
We brought running shoes on our honeymoon in Asheville, but we never ran. And then I crashed hard and bronchitis set in. I had the kind of deep cough that rattles the ribs (at one point, I thought I had broken one, it was so sore from coughing). I worked a lot but enjoyed what felt like endless free time, what with the long summer days combined with no wedding to plan and no marathon on my horizon.
Now I feel fully recovered from the physical and emotional feats of the spring, and the itch to run is coming back. I've been eyeing potential goal races this fall, but haven't committed to anything yet. I'm letting this feeling sit for a while and waiting to see if it roots. I do really miss training for something.