I'm training for a race.
A half marathon that I am running on my own.
All by myself, in my neighborhood.
No actual race.
No bib number.
No gorgeous trail.
No spectators cheering me on.
No one to catch up to.
No one chasing after me that I'm trying to keep in front of.
No music.
No company.
Just me.

And that's why I do it.
It's just me against myself.
Me against my own demons.
Me against my own negative voice.
Me against my MS.
Me against my tired.
Me against my negative self talk.
Me against my body image.
Me against my weight.
Me against my career.
Me against my mothering.
Me against my marriage.
Me against my tired.

It starts with the just the sound of my feet.
Hitting hard against the pavement.
My clumsy body looking ridiculous as I move forward.
My mind telling me how much it doesn't want to be doing this.

The miles count down.
And I fight forward.

I get to think about all the things that trouble me.
I get to clear a bit of my crazy and take this moment to breathe and work it out.
I think about my career, my choices, my agency and what I can be doing differently.
I think about my marriage and my person and what I could be doing to make him feel more supported.
Am I loving you enough?
Do you realize how much you have done for me, how much you have given me, how much I want to start and end my days with you, and just you?
Do I let you in enough?
I think about my kids and if I am doing right by them?
Am I showing you what mother looks like?
Am I showing you what you can accomplish?
Am I showing you that nothing will be handed to you?
Am I showing you love?
Am I showing you compassion and honest?
Am I showing you my heart?
Am I showing you strong?
Am I showing you that bad days will come, but we will fight on?
I think about me.
I think about how much I dislike meek in me.
I think about how much I want changed in me.
I think about all the decisions I have made that led me here.
I think about how in the end, it meant I got to have all of you.

And the miles count down.

I think about me.
I think about my insecurities.
I think about the voice that keeps reminding me that I'm weak, I'm too much of a yes person, I never take the lead.
I think about the competition against myself.
How much I do compete with just me.
And I guess that means I get to win, but I get to lose too.
I think about how it's just me vs. me out here and how if I wanted to, I could stop.
I could give up.
But I won't give up on me and all the work I still need to do on myself.

I keep hearing the pounding of my awkward feet.
And the miles count down.

I hear my daughter ask if I'm going for a run today.
I hear her ask me "why" and me tell her that it's so healthy to keep your body moving.
If I say it enough, that means that I'm not worried about the scale.
I'm not worried about how kids have made me look so different.
I'm not worried about the pouch that won't go away.
I'm not worried about you touching me and it feeling different.

I hear her ask if she can come with me.
I can't wait to run along side you sweet girl.
I imagine we will talk about our days.
I imagine you telling me all that is bothering you, all that you are excited about, all that is happening.
I imagine it being our time.
But for now, I watch your faces pressed up against the window as I head down the driveway.

And the miles count down.

And next Saturday, I will head out.
I will tackle every single mile in the 13.1 I will run.
It is me against myself.
And that is why I run.


  1. […] gear to protect me, and battle on. And the gear looks different each time. It comes in the form of running shoes and race bibs. It comes in the form of swim suits and a woman close to 40 learning how to swim. It comes in the […]

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