Tomorrow will be Thanksgiving for those of us in the good ‘ol US of A. We will celebrate our nations humble beginnings, our connection to our families, our thanks to our God, and some among us will also deign to worship at the altar of football. So it is appropriate on this occasion to note what I am thankful for in this past year. However, before I get to all that, it is important to note that it was somehow comical to someone to place a marathon at just such a date as to cause its runners difficulty. Why? Because we must go through taper at Thanksgiving.
Now, to non-runners this may seem comical. We are still running and of course, we run so that we can eat. However, during taper we who await the marathon are lowering our runs in both length and intensity. Therefore, we must be careful what we are eating because those weeks of mucho miles have disappeared. This week is a very low mileage week and the next is our marathon week where we will run very little. Thanksgiving is sandwiched right in the middle of both. It won’t mean that I can’t eat at Thanksgiving, but I will not be able to throw caution to the wind either. I think a sadist dreamed up the dates for the White Rock.
On the other hand, I am thankful to even have such a dilemma. I am glad that I have been blessed this year with both the energy and strength to be able to train. I am thankful that I have a family that supports my running (albeit tongue-in-cheek most days). My sweetie has become my best coach during this year. She often has the right words to say and the better choices for me to make that have led to improvement. I am thankful that I have a job that both allows me the time to train and provides for my families needs. I am thankful for my friends, both close ones and those I know only on-line. Many of them are also runners and triathletes. It is good to hear of their successes and also to know they endure the same things as I.
I am thankful for my church. Not only is it a place where we all can grow closer to God, but it is a safe place where love is shared and hope is given. Not only does it provide me with work to do, but many of my brothers and sisters are as much my family as…my family. I am thankful that I have the knowledge and strength to help support our ministers in their work.
I am thankful for my aches and pains when they come and the injuries I had this year. In all of the difficulties I have endured both on the road and in daily life, I am thankful because these things teach perseverance, endurance, and patience. I hope that I have learned some of these lessons. I am thankful that I have grown older this year. Not only does it get me free sodas in some places and free swimming, but I hope that it makes me more useful to others.
I am thankful for all of the riches I have been blessed with and I trust they are used for the right purposes. For, I know that there have been many that have suffered greatly this year, both our service men and women and their families as well as all those that have suffered loss of jobs or loved ones this year. Our times are tough and their seems to be a lack of compassion and mercy going round these days. I hope that those things will change for the better very soon.
So there you have it. Thanksgiving is much more than just great food and families getting together. It is a time to reflect upon where we are and how we have been cared for during the year. I’ll watch my calories tomorrow and over the weekend and be thankful that I still get to swim, bike, and run. I look forward to my marathon in a week. It’ll be time. Happy Thanksgiving!