Friday, March 2, 2012


I have never been a runner.  Never.  I remember in 7th grade PE in San Diego being exhorted by athletic Miss Zinn to "RUN!" and so I did, but she couldn't make me like it.  In 11th grade we moved to a small town in rural Oregon where everyone went out for sports--both for something to do, and because bodies were needed to field a team.  I have painful memories of those track meets--I had no idea what I was doing, and was the last one to cross the line, every time. 

It's not that I wasn't active--I was.  As kids we all had bikes and roller skates.  As an adult I hiked, walked, and rode my fat tired bike all over the place.  A few years ago a friend introduced me to cycling and I was hooked. I put lots of miles on my beautiful, cobalt blue Giant before coming here.  (She's the one item in my storage unit that I really miss!) I don't have a bicycle here, and not sure that I'll get one. 

When I first arrived, we spent an entire month in a hotel in Abu Dhabi. It had a good gym with plenty of treadmills and I went every day.  I started out walking, but with my son's encouragement, started to run.  Once we came out here to the Western Region, I asked around and found out that there were only two options--The Liwa Hotel gym or the Tilal Liwa Hotel gym. (Someone would make a killing if they opened a 24 hour Fitness Center here!)  The Liwa Hotel is in the town where I teach, and the Tilal Liwa is closer to where I live.  We had stayed at the Tilal for a few days, and the road leading to it has many, many speed humps.  I knew that I would never, at the end of a long day of teaching, make the drive over all those humps, to get to the gym.  So the Liwa Hotel it was. 

A couple of months ago I found out that a group of teachers met to walk or run at the local park every Friday morning, so I joined them.  One of the guys, who was also not a runner before coming here, told us about an upcoming 10K race.  It never occurred to me to sign up--after all, I'm not a runner.  Every week we'd meet and talk as we walked the first lap together.  They convinced me to sign up and give it a try.

By this time next week I will have my first 10K under my belt.  Yikes. I am nervous, but determined to finish, even if I'm still the last one to cross the finish line.

Oh, and there's another meaning for the word "runner" that is used here.  A "runner" is someone who, for whatever reason, packs up and heads to the airport in the middle of the night without telling anyone that he or she is leaving.  I just might be turning into a runner, but I'm not a "runner."


jeff said...

Good for you! I've never been a runner either, if I can get there on my bike, why run? But there is a growing number of runners in my family, and I can see the draw.

Arlene said...

Have fun running. I loved it in PE in highschool, but quit because of a crick in one ankle. The doctor we went to had no idea. Hmmm, would have meant more doc visits, and possible an MRI. I don't think so. Besides, I was working.

Doozyanner said...

Thanks, Jeff. Running is growing on me, but it doesn't take the place of riding. I have bicycle envy whenever I see the rare cyclist on the road here. Arlene, it isn't fun--yet. I have no idea what "high" real runners talk about. I just feel relief when I stop.

The Old Bag said...

You know Doozy, I'm the same, although I was a runner in high school...but intermediate distances weren't really running to me. Once around the track, done. Halfway around the track, done. THAT's my type of running. I'll get out for a couple miles now and again when I have to, but I can't say I enjoy it.