It’s been a while since I’ve posted. Not for lack of ideas, but for lack of time, energy, motivation…I don’t know what. Things have been a little extra crazy at work, but that isn’t it. I was sick for a while, but that isn’t it, either. I think that it’s one of those perfect storm situations – everything was a little off for a while, making my schedule a mess and throwing off my usual flow. But, I’m back, and hopefully more organized. So, here’s a little post about what I’ve been thinking about lately.

Did you see this amazing Running Times article? In “An Elite State of Mind”, David Alm writes about what he learned from his foray into the ranks of elite runners. While running as an elite is something I can only dream about, the ideas David presents really resonated with me. I loved it so much I read it three times. In a row. David says there are four keys to an elite attitude: 1) Don’t treat training runs or race times as indications of your self-worth, 2) Value every runner’s efforts, success and potential, 3) Don’t beat yourself up in training or in evaluating your workouts and racing, and 4) Recognize that your running ability is a result of many factors, not just how serious you are or how hard you push. It was two and four that really got me. Every runner deserves recognition for her efforts, success, and potential, with the recognition that any success is the result of a combination of factors. Too often, at the slower end of the spectrum, I see runners devalue other runners for any number of ridiculous reasons. So often, it’s because of speed. Now that I’m in the mid-pack, I’ve written about my thoughts on back of the pack life. It isn’t always friendly. Why does this happen? As runners, we should build each other up, support each other, and value each other. Speed isn’t the most important thing, nor is your training log, your PRs, or any other marker of running “success”. What’s important is how running makes you feel. If you love it, and I love it, that’s enough for me.

Want to be inspired by the power of running to give back to a community? Check out the write ups (here and here for good ones) of the Hartford Marathon Foundation’s Sandy Hook Run for the Families 5k. The inaugural event raised over $40,000 for charities associated with the Newtown shooting tragedy. What’s even more wonderful than the huge response and the fundraising was the spirit of the race. Thousands of runners and spectators, all wearing green, holding hands, running together, and being with the families of the Newtown tragedy in spirit. It was a great event, and one that made me proud to be a runner.

Sandy Hook Run