Friday, January 8, 2010


See this? It is my Garmin Forerunner 405.

A watch? You are wondering. Is that what this is?
Yes, a watch.

But, a watch is the very least of what it is.

On the box it is called a "GPS-enabled sports watch with wireless sync." Older models are big and bulky and people wear them up high on their arms. But this one is like -- a watch.

All day long my Garmin and I sit and stare at each other.

It used to be on my nightstand table, so I could lie there on my bed -- staring -- as it stared back.

But, I knew that a spot like that was too low -- too easy for little grabby one year old fingers to reach, so it moved to the tall dresser at the foot of our bed.

Now, it stares at me from up there -- asking me why. And I sit at the foot of my bed -- staring back -- shaking my head.

That is what we do. All day long.

Well, maybe not all day. Sometimes, sometimes, I have to do one or two other things.

A dinner here. A car ride there. A laundry load everywhere.

And, sometimes, SOMETIMES, I take my Garmin Forerunner 405 down from the dresser and push the little finger touch bezel to switch it to training mode. Then I look at the training mode and think what a great mode it is.

Other times, I touch the top of the bezel to see it switch to the screen that tells me how much battery life it has left before needing to be charged. Today, when it beeped, "battery low," I rushed to charge it back up again -- because, at least, that was something.

Mike bought me this for Christmas. It can do all kinds of crazy stuff and relay that info to your computer, but the main thing really is that it tells you your distance as well as your pace as you run.

I have been so excited about this cool present. Some elite and granola groups of runners act too cool for GPS watches. I don't know why. Maybe it isn't cool to pay more attention to a device telling you your pace? Maybe you won't listen to your own body anymore? Maybe it isn't hip to be aware of your exact distance?

But you know what I like.

I don't care.

I say pshaww to those fancy pants runners. I say, I am a runner, and I can love and enjoy and be excited about my GPS all I want. It's fun. It's awesome. Take that.
Only, I can't enjoy it yet.

I can only look.

But I will enjoy it. I've run since I was 14. I can listen to my body pretty well. I know about how long it takes me to run any given distance, etc. But it will be so fun for me when I am training for longer races to just head out the door and run wherever the wind takes me with out having to chart a course the night before -- with out having to stick to that course if I feel like turning a different direction. Plus, I am wanting to work on my pace. How fun to keep tabs on it as I go!

A few days before the gift was unwrapped found me sobbing unreasonably into Mike's shoulder that I would never be able to run again. Weep wail. All was lost. I loved running. Did he understand that I LOVE RUNNING?! How could he understand? Sob. How could anyone? And now, it was certain I would never ever ever run again. Ever.
Of course, I had been reading things online.

And Mike thought that perhaps, one day of severe pain in my lower heel didn't necessarily mean I would never run again. Yes, he knew I loved running. And maybe (very gently suggested maybe) maybe it was a bit premature for sobbings of, "I'll never run again."

It's called plantar fasciitis -- the foot problem. Something to do with the tendon that runs along the bottom of your foot from you heel to your toe -- supporting your arch. I always thought injuries were for . . . well . . . other people. People who weren't me. Or, maybe even . . . sheepishly I'll say it . . . people who were too wimpy to push through a tiny little bit of pain?

I see I was wrong. I see I've needed a little humbling. A little punishing?

I keep getting all messed up. My knee. My ankle. My foot. Only this one scared me the worst because everything I read sounded like you were doomed forever. "You must never wear bare feet." (I love bare feet). "Orthotics." "Pain." "Never run hard. Always take it easy. No hills. No speed." "Ten years with no relief."

Those were the things I was reading.

But, I've calmed my little self a bit. I've been talking to folks. Asking. Listening. It's starting to seem like everyone has had it. My sister-in-law has had it before. She doesn't have it now. She is almost an Olympic level marathoner. My neighbor has it. It flares up now and then. Etc.

It isn't so hopeless.

Mike was right.

He's always right.
I love him.

That's why he still gave me my GPS (not because I love him -- because he knew he was right -- he knew I'd be up and running ere long). That's why I love it.

I'll run again . . . soon. I've been wearing arch supports, and stretching, and rolling my foot on a ball at night, and being careful. I'm a little impatient because I want to run hard right now and I'm not always in a season of being able to run hard. And, well, I want to train for another marathon soon. As in very very soon.

In the meantime . . . my forerunner 405 and I will keep staring at each other . . . waiting . . . waiting and waiting.

On a positive note. I got a gym membership for the first time ever. In the past it was always too expensive or too far away. Plus, finding the time to work out at all has been so hard at this time in my life that when I have found it I have always wanted to be running. BUT, with running on pause, I've tried the cycling class twice (no foot pounding there) and I have to say that it felt like a seriously amazing work out. Of course then I come home and must glance guiltily at my Garmin. He looks back -- questioning my loyalty.

I should add that it is not as if I am ever getting to run (or now go to the gym) easy as pie. I always feel sad when I think of those of you who can and do. I'm lucky if it is three times a week and that usually involves getting up at 5:30am -- not something easy or pleasant for someone who rarely gets to bed before 11:30pm.


Karen said...

Your Mike is so sweet.

You will be running in no time at all. Your Garmin sounds like it is taunting you for a test drive.

Tia Juana said...

I think it is great that you love your little GPSey thing so much and how nice that you got to have it, to share your daily dreamings. See, while I am planning the funerals of all those I hold dear, you are doing more productive things like dreaming of running. I can't help but think that alone will heal you up just fine.

And I thought my instant netflix on my Blu-Ray was snazzy.

Lover of Sweets said...

Oh goodness, I had no idea of your foot issues. I too have suffered from stupid P.F. we will call it. It was horrible for a while, but then just went away and then came back and was bad again so I went to the podiatrist and he gave me this cool sexy sock to wear at night while stretches your heel all night long and then when you take it off in the pain. Anywho, Mike is quite wise for his young years and very generous to give you such a fancy device. I hope that you and your forerunner can get reacquainted very soon.

Perla said...

i am not the runner that you are but i had pfpf (don't ask aaron the real meaning of those initials) starting on my mission and some time after. on my mission it was TERRIBLE and i had to go get cortizone shots in my heel and they told me to rest but i was on a mission and you're not allowed to rest...just walk and walk and walk AAAAAAND waaaaaalk. it eventually went away but i never heard of the sock. i do wear orthotics in my running and soccer shoes. but now i have a NEW heel pain and it is TERRIBLE. it started a couple of months ago and it is on the outer-back side of my right heel. some other type of itis. i guess i'll have to go see a podiatrist to see if anything can help it cuz it hurts like the dickens and i limp around the house pretty much all day and night but still go run and play soccer and it actually doesn't hurt while i'm in the midst of a good run or game--funny--but after--hooo-wee. watch me get up in the night with miles. so sad. and why don't i know anything about this or your gym membership or your watch or anything until now???

jami said...

hang in there. my sister has the same thing, and it's getting better. :) yours will too, and you and mr (miss/mrs? :) ) garmin will be out hitting the road sooner than you know it. :)

marzee said...

You and your Garmin are already building a good relationship. Read to it, sing it a lullaby, let it know that you care and that one day - you'll put him to work. Right now - baby steps.

Jay said...

You will run again. I just know it. Plantar faciitis be damned! I love those garmins. It's the only thing that got me excited to run again before I got pregnant with Livy. Then my interest dwindled and I haven't ran since.

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