Running on a Stage

I looked at my friends running ahead with green eyes. How graceful they looked tackling the trails with ease and grace while I tripped over every rock and stick that crossed my path. As the runners ahead stopped to give their dog water, I caught up and said with resentment; “I am in a running rut!”
My friend just looked at me. She gave her optimistic smile and said; “As I recall you were in a running rut before the Maui Marathon.”
This statement took me by surprise and I realized she was right. It’s me! All me! Am I just living inside of my head?

Can't always lead the pack
Always right before an important race that I trained hard for, I seem not up to par in my running performance. I also, seem to get partially sick. I say partially because I am never one to get fully sick, I get the early stages of a cold it's true, but it never progresses into anything major, but I worry that it will. Could these unnecessary dramatics be avoided if I didn’t worry so much?

Nothing but blue skies right?
And speaking of dramatics-

I tweeted one day to a fellow runner that “Running a race was like performing on a stage - always so nerve racking.”
Yes, I am a part time actress and have been performing on the stage and screen for many moons. When I did live theatre I would have anxiety dreams right before opening night that I wouldn’t have my costume, or didn’t know my lines. Fortunately these were just nightmares for my opening nights always went flawlessly. The same goes for racing. Days before I would have run dreams where I ran in the wrong direction (which I have done in the past, but it was never as bad as my dream portrayed) or I overslept and missed the gun sendoff. I would wake in a cold chill, and no that wasn’t sweat from not changing out of my running clothes.

In running, instead of performing in front of hundreds of people, I am performing with hundreds of people. While on the stage, the ability to sing, and dance, and move around easily certainly does take endurance, but it doesn’t compare to running a race where sometimes I want to cry because the pain of running too fast  is far to much to bear.
So yes, I do compare running to performing. Both bring out the same dark forces that make me feel insecure with my talents and abilities. I must write post-it notes and stick them on my bathroom mirror to remind myself that I have worked hard to get to where I am and am well rehearsed. That I will give the best performance that I possibly can. And unlike the stage, I am running for nobody else but me! Deep breath. Namaste.

Forest of Nisene Marks State Park but of course.

My favorite picture taken on that day - Nisene Marks

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