ORN: 5.2 miles, 49:34, R6/W1, 9:33/mile
About 3 hours into last Saturday’s 22 mile run, I mulled just why an otherwise seemingly sane man would do such a thing. On the one hand it is laughable…getting up at 4:50am on a Saturday morning to fit in a 4 hour run before a family event seems absolutely nuts. On the other hand, it made perfect sense.
For me, there is clearly a personality/temperament component. On any personality test I’ve ever done, I fall dead center on the extrovert/introvert scale. I like to be with people; I have to get away from people. I feel equally about both statements. In this instance, my experience squares with the tests.
In my job in manufacturing management, I’m with people a lot. I feel strongly about having an open door policy…people know they can walk in any time, and so they do. I spend as much time as I can on the shop floor, with our associates and supervisors. We solve problems; we keep things moving. The last few months have had some wonderful but complex things going on, which has required more people time than usual.
In my personal life, it has been an intense few months as well. Out of town visitors, lots of committee work at our church, even umpiring 1-3 baseball games each week force me into lots of contact with others. Again, all good stuff, just lots of it.
So, three hours into a long run on Saturday, I was just reveling in the moment. And the reason I was reveling suddenly hit me…running provides me with the necessary balance in the introvert/extrovert thing. I simply go out and run. No one else is crazy enough to come along. I’m by myself. When I run, I think, I pray, I mull, I sing, I analyze. I have never had an interest in carrying music on my runs. I don’t do group runs, even though our local running club has them weekly. I don’t run with friends. None of these things ever has had any pull on me. And it hit me Saturday I naturally crave the time alone, time I can just be with myself and my thoughts. It is the time during which I feed the “introvert” side of me.
Now, before you write me off as an anti-social recluse with deep-seated issues, please let me state this blog serves as a wonderful way to stoke the real extrovert side of me. Talking endlessly about splits, training, races, ITBs, shoes, Gu, humidity and Garmins bores the daylights out of virtually everyone else I know. But not here…we have a wonderful community with which I enjoy connecting. All of you regular readers mean more to me than you can know. As was probably evident in my recent Notre Dame race report, I loved having John here to run with.
And there are lots more reasons why I run as well. I love being in good condition; I love running all year in all kinds of weather; I love planning training; I love going to races and running, there, with others.
And I love training alone.
Thanks for listening. And keep persevering.