I just wanted to give a shout out to my longtime friend, running inspiration and "virtual running partner" Kelly, who is running the Tokyo marathon today. I say virtual because, well, she lives in Japan, I live in Florida, and we've never actually run together, physically. (If we did, I think she would have dragged me into running a full marathon by now.) But I often think of her courage when I'm running the suburban streets of Weston to keep myself going when I am dragging--and when I'm really loving the run, smiling with the beat of my feet on the asphalt, I think of her, too. Because I know she knows what that feels like.
Kelly and I never ran together, but I think you could say we built our base for prolonged cardio when we were high school kids, and used to walk from West Philadelphia (Unviersity of Pennsylvania campus) to the very most eastern point, Penn's Landing, talking the entire time, stopping into bookstores and coffee shops in that pre-Starbucks and pre-Borders era that was the early 90s, and doing it just because we could. We'd easily walk 10 miles on a Sunday afternoon, and unless I was wearing uncomfortable shoes (I remember dragging her into CVS more than once for Band-Aids), the physicality of what we were doing was never anything we thought about. We had so much to talk about it that it honestly isn't until now, as an adult who hopes her kids will also one day be that effortlessly active as teenagers, that I even considered the distance, or recognized that those walks were actually "exercise."
Kelly, you're going to do great! When you get tired, just imagine you're downing one of those enormous iced coffees at Caribou, or that we're racing to catch the Speedline together. I can't wait to hear how it goes.