This morning, I finally went out for a cold-weather run in the cold cold weather - wind chill of 8 degrees. I think my mildly asthmatic lungs have finally adjusted to the absolute bitterness of the cold, and last week's brief holiday into the 50's finally swept away all the dangerous snow and ice.
Adding to that the burst of energy from being nearly halfway through Whole30 (and inspired by my husband's first time doing it) and the general optimism that flows through a New Year, and there was no way I wasn't dragging myself out of my warm bed for a run this morning. It was freezing cold and the bottom part of my face felt numb by the end, but my God it also felt fantastic.
Aside from those things taking away any more excuses to get out there, I have been so deeply, deeply inspired recently by four great runners and people, all of whose praises I have sung on the blog before. But it's my blog and I get to sing them again if I want to!
For starters on the running inspiration front, my beautiful friend Laura achieved her crazy goal of completing not only her very first marathon but the Goofy Challenge - aka a half marathon on a Saturday and a full marathon the very next day. Check out her video recap (which I'm going to catch up on for myself tonight!) here, as well as a ton of other fun and inspiring videos about her running journey.
Then, my favorite podcast of all time, Two Gomers Run for Their Lives, came upon a momentous occasion yesterday! One of the two Gomers finally achieved a goal they've had their eyes on for many years - to run a sub-5 hour marathon. These guys have so deeply inspired and entertained me over the years, and their completely open and unselfish love and support of each other is a truly beautiful thing to behold. They're also hilarious. If you haven't already jumped on board the Gomer Nation, you absolutely have to listen to this podcast. They're truly incredible people.
Finally, this weekend I saw my friend Lu give an absolutely thrilling performance that still gives me goosebumps when I think about. She wrote and produced her own live Cabaret - The Big C Cabaret - all about what she's gone through the last three and a half years from being ready to pursue her dream of acting in NYC, to being diagnosed with cancer, through treatment and side effects and obstacles I can't even begin to imagine overcoming - and overcoming them. She has survived and is thriving. She crushed the NYC Marathon this past November, as well as her fundraising goal for Memorial Sloan-Kettering, and on top of it all, her singing voice is out of this world. She was luminous, and getting to experience her triumphant performance next to my wonderful husband and her wonderful husband, one of my oldest and most precious friends, just brings me to tears when I think about it. Read Lu's beautifully written blog and follow her adventures here.
I think one of the most important lessons that I continually learn over and over about running and life is that you're usually just one inspiring story away from a better outlook, a better mood, and the ability to pick yourself up off the floor and move. We have so much power over our own mood and health, even when we feel powerless with regards to other circumstances in our lives. Sometimes we just need a little help from our friends.
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