Ode to the Runners Soul: #Activitystreak!

First group run back from an injury, and my fellow striders are readers of Older Faster Stronger — newly retired and new to running, seasoned for-lifers, coaches, Boston qualifiers, new mom pushing stroller, Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever (who herds us/leads us).

A beautiful menagerie who run with the Runners Soul in Lethbridge, Alberta.

What trail they lead me down, winding around a frozen lake, path snow dusted, massive prairie sky drenching us with winter sun.

Their marathon club invited me here to share wisdom, advice, inspiration from my Older Faster Stronger super-fit year, yet they explode my heart with their zeal, their running goals:

– to keep an activity streak going (do something every day, whether run, walk, swim, bike, ski, chase stars…)

– to run a marathon in every capital of Canada (this from a 65-year-old newbie runner; she says, I better get cracking with 14 to complete)

– to find fun and joy in every run (which sometimes includes donuts)

That searing pain in my back? What pain? What back? What winter? What cold?

Their running dreams buoy me so I become feet gliding on air.

Too soon, this run is over.


2 Responses to Ode to the Runners Soul: #Activitystreak!

  1. Jenn Davis January 19, 2016 at 12:39 am #

    Thank you for the inspiring talk tonight. While I have run several half marathons over the last 8 years, I am new to the Runners Soul club. I am hoping that the group will help me be more consistent with my training in spite of my gruelling schedule as a shift worker. For the last 3 years I have been working as a RN in the ER 12 hour day and night shifts. Prior to getting a nursing degree I worked as a massage therapy instructor & obtained another degree in Exercise Science. As an Ex Science student I was fortunate to participate in research, an area of interest to one of my mentors was exercise induced fatigue. Under my professor I researched the theory that the female hormone estrogen actually enhances the efficency of the beta oxidation of fats for energy. Essentially estrogen helps us be more efficient metabolic engines thus letting us go longer. I would be curious to see if your older running superstars like BJ had higher circulating levels of estrogen compared to other post menopausal women. Thanks for sharing your amazing story. Happy Running!

    • Margaret January 19, 2016 at 9:43 am #

      Hi Jenn — fascinating research and a great question that I will pass onto the researchers in Montreal. You’ll see from an early chapter that I call estrogen our superhero hormone. My hunch is EXERCISE causes BJ to produce higher levels of hormones (like DHEA) that mimic the work of estrogen (you’ll see that in a chapter – quite complicated so didn’t get into it), which helps her accomplish such feats of endurance. So, while we lose our estrogen at menopause, we can pump up circulation of others that do the same work. Doctors are quick to prescribe hormone replacement therapy when they should be prescribing exercise. I feel for you re. the long hours — whenever I spend time in a hospital (visiting others!) I notice that nurses seem to be really suffering for it, struggling with extra weight, poor eating etc. You’d think hospital employees would be the healthiest — and their workplace would help them achieve that? Wonder if there’s a revolution you could lead there? Would certainly help reduce sick days etc. Good luck with your bid for better fitness — keep in mind that a short run is better than no run and fit in what you can. Thank you for writing, m

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