It's the type of thing you read about in Runners World. One of those feel-good stories that makes you happy to be a runner. It happened to me today! No I didn't get a bottle of water from a random motorist. No, I didn't find a 100 dollar bill on my run (although man, that would be nice and REALLY feel good). This was different.
Before anything else, I'm better...I think. Food stays down and although I might be a little bloated from my diet being all out of whack, I'm doing good for the most part. Since I was feeling uber antsy this morning from not working out the last 3 days, I had to get back out there and do something. So I decided to go for a longer run.
I had just started out and was running up the "Hill of Doom", as we call it, when I heard footsteps behind me. Since I'm keenly aware of my surroundings, I glanced back to make sure it wasn't some guy trying to sneak up on me. Not that he could have taken anything; I run with my cell phone and that's it. And really, if someone wants it, please take it. Yes, I'm planning on getting RoadID but that's going to have to wait a bit. But it was just another runner. An older dude. Maybe in his early 50's. He passed me cause I'm really slow right now and said "good morning". I returned the greeting and continued up said hill. He went straight at the light, I went left, and that was that.
Towards the tail end of my run, I was preparing to run up the Hill of Doom again to get home when I saw a runner on the opposite side of the street. When I run there aren't a lot of runners out, due to the fact I have an unconventional job with unconventional hours. So to see another runner out there is a little unusual. Lo and behold, it was the same guy! 25 minutes we were out doing our own thing and our paths crossed again! Then he yelled something that I usually only hear on race days:
"Good job! Keep it up!"
This guy and I probably have nothing in common. He's old, I'm young. He doesn't wear a hat, I do. He is fast, I'm slow. And yet, this total stranger and I shared a bond that is really special. Because at the end of the day, it doesn't matter how many races you've completed. It doesn't matter the distance you've run in a lifetime. It doesn't matter if you're a weekender or an Ironman. Because in the end, we're all runners.