It would be an understatement if one were to say “Kari is not your proto-typical runner.” I, by no means, look or run like Suzy Favor Hamilton. I’m that runner out there that some may walk/run/bike by and wonder “is she gonna make it?” But you know what, I am out there! The day I found out I was pregnant with my daughter I was diagnosed with compartment syndrome in my right calf muscle. Those of you out there with this horrible syndrome feel my pain, for those of you who do not, imagine running along, singing your song and then some ninja in the bushes throws a knife into the meat of your calf. I am not exaggerating the pain at all, not one iota.
Fast forward, when my beautiful daughter was just over a year old and I was still struggling to shed baby weight I started to walk. I walked the 2008 Crazylegs and thought – this is the worst ever – who walks!?! I used to be a runner! (And to all you walkers out there – big ups to you, I do not have the patience to walk right now in my life, maybe later, when my knees tell me I can not run any more, I will wholly embrace the walk.) By mid-June of ’08 I was on the treadmill at Prairie Athletic Club cursing the waif runner next to me who just jumped off the treadmill with a huge runner’s high, I stepped up my speed and RAN! I ran for about 1 mile before my calf started to fire a little and I backed off immediately. From June on I was hooked again, I increased my time and speed slow and steady, trying to ward off the return of my calf pain…. I have been running ever since! I am training for my first Â½ marathon in
I found myself again this past Sunday, and worked through my fears with the help of my husband and daughter’s encouraging words. To quote one of my fav running songs “I run for hope, I run to feel, I run for the truth for all that is real… I run for life.” My life is better because I run, I am a better person because I run, and I seem to rediscover myself in every run. I run so I can truly live.