It’s here! Today is the day my sister and I celebrate 365 days straight of running! What a journey this has been so far. Two sisters who started this streak without a plan, without a goal we just laced up and ran with it.
Let me back up a little with how this all got started. This is actually my 2nd run streak. A year ago this week my youngest son, Liam, was admitted to Children’s Rady Hospital with Pneumonia, Brochiolitis and RSV. He and I spent 4 nights in the hospital, and never leaving his side that first night, that run streak ended at 262 days, rightfully so.
It goes without saying our children and their health come first, that was never a question. But I still struggled a bit emotionally while we were there, between helplessly watching my sick baby — and letting go of a goal I had set for myself and worked hard for.
That first streak started at a time for me when I was in need of something else to focus on, something to distract me and something to work towards. I remember getting so frustrated with people who would say things like “Oh don’t worry about a silly run streak, your Son is sick that’s what’s most important.” (Insert gigantic size eye roll here). DUH. I could rant away with every sarcastic comeback that crossed my mind when people said those things to me but in short, here’s the bottom line:
Unless you are a runner, you may never understand how to truly support another runner or the validity of the highs and lows of this sport that we endure. Runners are a rare breed of crazy.
I laid in the hospital bed with Liam that first night for a couple of hours to snuggle him and I cried — for him and for me. I remember getting a text message from my Sister that said something along the lines of “Maybe when you and LeeLee get out of the hospital we can start a new run streak, together. I have no idea if I can go as long as you have but I can try.”
We have celebrated each little milestone along the way and have squeezed in a run together whenever we can make it work. We finished Day 58 with high fives!
Now here we are, 365 days later and I am SO proud of her, and this Sister Runstreak of ours. I remember us being so excited when we hit day 100 — strangely this day seemed like a lifetime ago although the year itself has flown by.
Runstreaking takes a huge amount of dedication. As busy working moms, each with 2 kids and their school, sports and other family responsibilities — you have to get damn creative sometimes to get it done. My sister often does her runs at night around the soccer fields her daughter practices at like you see here so she can make it work.
We have a 1 easy mile minimum for our “rest days,” or basically just days when you can’t do life. Really there have only been a handful of days that have felt like this…
We have run happy, mad, hungry, full, tipsy (face palm). I have had tearful runs when things were weighing on my mind, I have run post-Marathon and late at night. I have run with a stomach bug, and I have even hit the treadmill at 3:30am to get my mile in before catching a flight to San Francisco. We fly there every summer for the Giant Race.
It is possible. So many people say it’s not, but it is — if you want it.
Mostly we have received an outpouring of love and support from our running community, and fellow run streakers and are just so happy to be doing this together. I love the adventure and uncertainty of it all. We run together, or alone, we run races and we have met so many new people who have inspired and motivated us along the way.
I will say that run streaking is definitely not for everyone. We have people tell us about how bad this is for us, or that we shouldn’t be doing it, but we have reached this milestone because we have played it safe. We are cautious and we listen to our bodies. I would never run through an injury or jeopardize my ability to run long-term for the sake of keeping this streak alive. So far we have been fortunate enough to continue to do what we love every single day and for that we are grateful. To be honest, I have seen big improvements in my running since I started — I’m stronger and faster.
It seems everybody has an opinion about everything these days, and that’s never going to change, they’re entitled. What they’re not entitled to is steering you in a direction you weren’t headed in.
You had a purpose before anyone had an opinion.
Remember that. Had we listened to everyone else we would have missed out on a pretty adventurous, challenging and fun-filled year of accomplishment!
We still never know what to say when people ask us how long we will continue, for now the plan is to just take it day by day like we have since the beginning.
All I know is this time around, the journey has been better together.
Run happy, my friends!