I think my IPod Nano is broke. It was a Christmas present from my Number 1 son and his girlfriend. Have I mentioned how much I love them? I’m not ashamed to admit their awesomeness went up a notch when I opened that gift last Christmas. It was a lavender color to boot, extra awesomeness! It was great because it would tell me how long it took me to run, or how much farther I had to go to reach my goal, and motivated me with music.
I only started running at age 49, just 4 years ago. It’s never ever been easy, but it was something I chose to do as a way to fight back against cancer. There are no guarantees in this life, but somehow I felt I was kicking cancer’s ass, whether I was or not, it was a good mental picture.

So it’s never been about being fast, but about getting to the finish line. My legs have no idea of what a stride is, one foot barely makes it past the other foot. I’m not sure if both feet ever get off the ground at the same time. I’m so short, old enough (notice I didn’t say so old) and chubby enough, well you get the picture. It’s always been a struggle. Just about the time I think there’s a chance my times might improve something gets in the way. This year it was a couple throat dilations I had to have due to the damage from the 42 radiation treatments I had, then it was back issues and there are always leg issues and feet issues. It isn’t ever easy.

I really had to kick myself to get back out there running, because by the time I was recovered from each one it was, I don’t know MAY, maybe. I’d have to look back to find the dates, short term memory issues too. AHHH life! After that it was this issue, that issue, blah, blah, blah, so here it is October and I feel like just maybe I’m getting my “groove” back. Yeah, just in time for winter to set in. I’m a winter runner wimp. The cold air hits my damaged airways and yeah, let’s wait for spring!  I told myself last year I wouldn’t wimp out, but creature of habit that I am…….wimp.

So I’ve been telling myself these last few weeks, I’m not wimping out this year! One reason is because I want to run a 5K next Mother’s Day in Peabody, MA, the Patrick Downey 5K, fighting esophageal cancer. I like good causes. My cancer was located in my tonsil and had spread to the lymph nodes. I was Stage IV and have survived for 9 years. Patrick didn’t survive, but his sister puts on this race every year in his memory. I don’t know them, but it all just touched my heart when I read about this race and Patrick. It left a mark. Some of my friends and family probably think I’m crazy for wanting to do this particular 5K, it’s only a 1000 or so miles away from my home. I’ve traveled over an hour for a race, but not 16 hours!

I have to keep running. You can’t plan a vacation around running a 5K and then not be ready for it. So for the last three weeks, every Friday I’ve been running my own personal 5K. Friday’s are a good day for me because I haven’t been standing on my feet all day at work. I do run during the week, but it’s really hard for me, my legs are killing me even after sitting for a couple hours resting my legs before I head out. I convince myself to just run 2 miles those days. It’s a struggle. But Fridays, while I still experience leg pain it’s not nearly as bad as during the week. Yet the first mile I constantly fight with myself to keep going, and the last mile too. Ahh hell, the middle mile as well! That has never changed, been doing that head yell for 4 years now. COME ON, DON”T STOP! You’re a turtle for a reason! Come on, one foot in front of the other. GET YOUR BUTT in GEAR!

I’m never going to win my age group, as long as there is someone else in the race with me. I accept that. My times have been, let’s just say over 40 minutes, okay let’s say 45 minutes there abouts. I am the Turtle Runner. So that’s why I think my IPOD Nano is broke because today when I ran my personal 5K, that little unsexy male voice (why can’t we hear someone like Colin Firth tell us our stats???) told me my time was 36 something or other! 36 minutes?? Yeah, it’s broke! I’ll know for sure it’s broke when I run the Donut Dash on Sunday the 27th and they post my real time at 45 something or other. Yep, time for a new IPOD, no way am I getting faster, but my new motto is PEABODY or BUST with Colin Firth’s voice saying, CONGRATULATIONS, you reached your goal of 3.1 miles! Well something like that!


About jlturtlerunner

12 plus Years Surviving Stage IV Oral Cancer. I have become a "Turtle" runner since that diagnosis, as a way of saying, "Take That Sucker!" After 12 years of being a Turtle Runner, I'm adding a new title, Turtle Rucker!

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