Wednesday, August 6, 2014

My New Normal

During my long run last week, I had one of those “what am I doing” moments. To paint the picture a little more clearly, I ran 15 miles in a thunderstorm. To make this a bit more clear, I HATE RUNNING IN THE RAIN! I knew I had to get my long run in, and I went to such extremes to finish. I even had to change socks 10 miles in because there were puddles forming in my shoes.

My poor shoes...

Who is this person, and is the real Steff still in bed sleeping?

I remember having a moment like this during my first round of marathon training in the spring of 2013. I was in the middle of a 55 mile week and felt like absolute garbage. I decided it would be a great idea to pump myself full of meds, and try to run 20 miles. Well, I made it 15 miles before I felt so light headed I couldn't move anymore.

The sad thing is, to people training for marathons, this isn't weird. It’s almost normal.

So around the nine mile mark of my long run, I started to think. What else has become normal to me that my running friends would not even bat an eye, but my non-running friends would want me committed for?

I have three water bottles in my car at all times. One is my handheld, one is always empty and one is refilled everyday so I have water in the car. I also have five tubes of Nuun in my purse. Plus they are all different flavors: Cherry Limeade, Fruit Punch, Lemon Lime, Watermelon and Tri-Berry.

What? I like variety! 

I have tons of bruises on my legs. In very random locations, yet none of them hurt. Not one. They appear for a few days then go away. Right now, my left shin is sporting a nice looking one and so is my right ankle. Again, no pain.

I have a spare packet of Honey Stinger Chews with me at all times. Why? I really don’t know. I only use them on long runs and have no need for them other than that. For some odd reason, they are always with me. I guess it makes me feel prepared.

mmmmm pink lemonade!

I have no problem spending money on anything running related. If you ask me to go to a movie, I will instantly say no. Plus my excuse will normally be “I can’t spend the money, I need to sign up for a race next week.” Also, if you ask me to be out later than 9pm the night before a long run, I will blow you off.

I buy specific foods to eat after my long run. For example, I have four containers of ice cream in my freezer. FOUR! I also have six boxes of fruit snacks. SIX! If I didn't just finish all the frozen pizza in my basement freezer, we could add six of those to this list as well. I also hoard Coke for post long runs. Can’t tell you why, but I have to have it when I’m done.

Thank goodness for sales!

My basement is cluttered with old running shoes. Sure, I could donate them, but then I might never see them again! There have been so many memories and miles on those shoes. They deserve my basement to be their shrine! Plus, I wear my old shoes to do other things! Yeah, that’s why they are still there!

I have even given some away already...

My coworkers know my training schedule. They know Mondays are rest day, Tuesday is track/speed and Sunday is long run. They also know to expect sore and cranky Steff on Monday mornings.

If I don’t write down a doctor’s appointment, I will never remember to go. If you ask me in week 10 of training what my long run is supposed to be, I can tell you without hesitation! In case you wondered, that’s my next half marathon.

NONE OF THIS IS STRANGE TO ME ANYMORE! Not in the slightest. I know I am not alone. I have learned to accept my new normal. I feel if you embrace the crazy parts of your life, others will follow!

Or your non-running friends will stop talking to you.

EITHER WAY, embrace the new normal crazy marathoners. You are not alone!

What weird quirk do you have that only runners will understand?


  1. Lmao. It really cracks me up how we are seriously the same. Every little quirk. Same.

  2. Steffany Smith RubelAugust 6, 2014 at 11:37 AM

    I know I am not alone!! It's very freeing to admit the odd quirks and move along lol

  3. Okay, this is hilarious...I, too, find very interesting things in my purse - a GU packet, always a Picky Bar (no matter how squished it may become, I'm still going to need it), and NUUN. My old running shoes are in my truck because, of course, I'm going to get around to donating them - ha! Then I see them in there and think, "but I might need a backup pair sometime and they're already here!" Riiiiight. We are CRAZY! HA!