It’s been a minute… things (and life) are up in the air…


That’s what I’m feeling the most at the moment.

Pure, all-consuming, debilitating, paralyzing fear.

And all because of a couple of days of running.

If I were an organized religion fan, I’d see this post as a confessional, a means to unburden my soul and be cleansed by some supposed expert/anointed designee capable of absolving sins and regrets and providing supposed penance/remedies.

If I were a reality TV fan, I’d see this post as a different kind of confessional, a means to lay out a strategy, sell myself and my “brand” for the coming weeks and beyond the show to engender and encourage audience engagement, with sympathy or hisses depending on my goal of being seen as a hero or villain for the next 15 micro-minutes of fame that reality TV may afford.

But if I were just me, writing this blog post for a select group of folks who have crossed paths out there on the marathon courses or in the land of the everyday or (gasp) only here in the virtual ooze that is the internet, well, then I’d just say I’m scared about the three day running event in Lake Tahoe this weekend.

I’ve been signed up for this thing for years, deferring the entry year after year. Sometimes it was due to a pandemic, sometimes because of wildfires that rescheduled the event to a weekend I couldn’t make it, and sometimes just because of the vagaries of life itself. Some of those deferrals were gratis and some were granted by a $50 bill. (“GRANT”-ed. I said, “sometimes they were “Ulysses S. GRANT-ed” by a 50.” Is this thing on? Can you hear me okay? These are the jokes, folks).

I knew going into this weekend that I was far from my fastest days, the years having taken a greater toll in the last 18 months than in the last 18 years. I guess it was cumulative and the bill final came due. But I’m a bit softer in the middle, a bit heavier in my footfalls and landings, and a bit more prone to chronic aches and pains. And I just don’t quite have the speed I once knew.

My race calendar has also been far emptier than in the past – whether I’m just tired of the miles required to GET to the races or tired of the miles DURING the races is a toss-up. But I do know I haven’t run a marathon in over 2 months. I tried upping my training, running for 4 consecutive weekends an 18 and a 20 miler back to back… but the difference between 38 miles over two days and 78.6 miles over three days is more than 40.6 miles. The amount of mental, physical, and emotional difference is at the moment incalculable.

And so I’m filled with fear. I’m afraid. I’m a frayed nerve. I’m not sure what will happen. But I guess the only way to find out is to start.

One foot. One yard. One mile.

One foot. One yard. One mile.

One foot…