Crafting a run

Sometimes I wish I had picked a sport where you can sit down while working out.

Like rowing for example – lots of leg and arm workouts but you get to sit. (Wait…see “scar on bottom of left foot” and “6th grade biology canoe trip” to recall why this is not the sport for me.)

Okay – how about biking? I’m always lapped by cyclists as I run and I think….man they get to sit down.  (Oops – just remembered the great bike accident of 1998 involving fire ants and an ambulance ride….never mind.)

Sometimes my legs just want a break.  Just a chance to park my maximum gluteus maximus…if you know what I mean.  Then again – if I keep running, perhaps my maximus can be a bit closer to “minimus”.

I lumbered this morning through nearly 3 miles.  You honestly can’t characterize my “run” as a “run” today….waited too late in the morning and the heat was unbearable.  I have no idea how people run Badwater….more power to those ultra-amazing people who can do it – or even think about trying it.  I know I’m never meant for feats of that type….temps over 80 and I’m only happy if I’m at the beach with a drink in hand.

But as I struggled to get back home this morning, I was thinking about how running demands that your body create forward movement whole cloth. No tools, no equipment, just you and your body doing all the work….which oddly enough made me think of knitting.

I taught myself to knit back when my first nephew was born. I figured I could be the cool crafty aunt (yeah yeah in many circles “cool” and “crafty” don’t go together….)  Anyway – 10 years later and I’m not too bad at knitting. You only need yarn and 2 needles (4 if you’re making socks) and it travels well (unless TSA sees the needles in your carry-on).  There’s ways you can be really fancy with your knitting stitches or you can just do the simple purl/knit combos.  Even with the simple stitches – people can be amazed by what you put together.

And like running -you are literally creating it whole cloth. Taking strands of string bundled together in the form of yarn and essential loop it together to make fabric. You only need your feet to move and you can put together many miles. Start with very little and get a lot out of it.

Much like my running style – I’m a straightforward, simple knitter.  A blanket, scarf, or a washcloth is usually my plan. Why?  Cause they are easy to tackle. Knock out a few washcloths in a week – then put together a scarf. Pump out a few 3 miles days in the week and work your way up to a 6 miler. I’ve made one or two baby sweaters….you need to knit the sleeves, then the back, then the front, then sew them together.  Ugh. The multiple steps involved usually give me pause. It seems too overwhelming – much like the idea of repeats, hills and fartleks give me a headache. I want to get there….but straightforward and simple makes so much more sense and I feel like I’ve actually accomplished something.

I’m going to be sure to pack well when we head out for our family trip in 2 weeks.  Running shoes and clothes as well as some yarn and knitting needles. Accomplishments mixed with family fun. How blessed I truly am.