So apparently, yesterday was the first day of spring: sunny, breezy, and 76 degrees. I happened to be downtown yesterday (I'll be downtown a lot for the next few months, more on that later) in the vicinity of Rice University, and as is usually the case near college campuses on the first day of spring, the sidewalks and paths were crowded with...RUNNERS.
There were herds of them, loping along gracefully, looking lean and trim and not the least bit out of breath. I watched them out of the corner of my eye with a touch--just a touch--of envy. And started formulating running plans in the back of my mind.
Running is a tough topic for me. I love to run, mostly just because (if you run, you know what I'm talking about) but also because it really gives me a lot more energy, and energy is a nice thing to have when you're a mom, especially when you're a mom to two very rambunctious little boys.
But sometimes I feel as though everything is conspiring to prevent me from running. First and foremost, of course, is the fact that I have two children who are obviously too small to be left alone while I head out for a run. When I first moved to Texas, Mom & Dad had not yet left for Israel, so I would get up early and go for a run before the boys woke; if they did wake up while I was gone, Mom was there to keep an eye on them till I got back. Now that Mom's gone, I can't do that.
Theoretically, I could still go for an early run, and let my brother deal with them if they woke. But he is a busy person and would probably not appreciate having them wake him, or interfere with his morning routine; so I would have to go really really early, to be quite sure that I would be back before they wake. But running so early would mean running in the dark, along desolate country roads, with no shoulder to speak of....I could do it, and have done it, but would rather not, you know?
Finally, the other day, it occurred to me that I could run back and forth down the street in front of our house while the boys play in the driveway. This will be incredibly tedious, as one lap back and forth will only be about a tenth of a mile. But at least I can be running.
So the next issue is (guys, feel free to tune out now) what to wear. :) Last summer I was struggling with how to run modestly, experimenting with various options and finally settling upon a pair of loose capris. But now I have discovered that what I thought was a strongly held tradition in our church--women wearing skirts--is actually a rule. A rule that is hard to find, therefore effectively "unwritten." I might as well say that I don't agree with this rule, nor with the idea of a rule being unwritten; but I'm willing to abide by it since when it comes to churches, there isn't another place I'd rather be. :) And one can always hope for change...does that make me sound like a dangerous insurrectionist? But for the time being, at least, this rule creates a new challenge to deal with when it comes to exercise.
Does anyone who read this blog run in a skirt?? Can you help me please? What do you wear and does it really work? How do you find a skirt that's full enough to stretch in yet not so full that it tangles itself around your legs while you run? I've tried a knit skirt (clung to sweaty legs; sorry guys, I warned you to tune out), a smooth polyester skirt (it BOUNCED), a denim skirt (it chafed), a light cotton skirt (wind...'nuf said), and now I'm out of ideas.
I'm a little bit afraid that someone is going to tell me "Well if you can't run decently in a skirt, then you shouldn't be running at all." And since I haven't been running lately, I don't have the energy to combat that hypothetical argument, so I won't. :)