Nineteen miles gives you a lot of time to spend with people - over 2.5 hours worth of time. I ran the last 7 with a guy I know fairly well. Just me, him and the path.
It is always interesting what you end up talking about - food, water, dehydration, vacation, health, cross training, races, PRs, and diabetes. It was a rather enlightening conversation.
The question was simple enough, "is it hard to prep for a run having diabetes?" That led to talking about insulin, food, check blood sugars, and the past. He commented that he thought it was great that I excel (I think that is the wrong word, but the one he used) at running despite having diabetes. That comment led to another discussion about how diabetes can get in the way of my running. Case in point: speeedwork last Tuesday. Letting my mind wander and mouth going, I was telling him about how I felt like sometimes I was judged during running if I had to sit out because of diabetes. I hate it when that happens. I hate it when my diabetes gets in the way of my life. But, it has to be dealt with or much worse things happen.
He offered me a good perspective, and one I think I needed to hear.
"I think the guys that run track with you on Tuesday admire you for being out there. Although they don't run your pace and don't do your workout (true statement), they are there to support you. They cheer for you by offering words of encouragement when you run. Think about the Polar Dash and that picture of you online. (True - there was a picture of me on the Polar Dash wall running on Facebook). Almost all of the guys - and many others - from the club commented on it. Not only did you look like you were running effortlessly in that photo, you had a smile on your face. Not many people could take a picture like that (he might need to read my What Race Pictures Teach You post). They want you to excel even more because you have something extra that no one else in the club has to deal with. Sure, we all have burdens to deal with. But most of the time, our burdens go away after a while. Yours, however, doesn't (i wish it did, though). They don't judge you for taking a break to get your blood sugar up - they admire you even more that you had the courage to start."
And then we ran the next 1/2 mile in silence, both lost in our own thoughts before my Garmin beeped 19 miles.
I never thought about having diabetes and running like that before. I think it was what I needed to hear after a hard week, diabetes-wise. Sometimes diabetes wears me down. I get tired and frustrated and cry about it. Then I pick up the pieces and move on in a better direction.
What is the wisest thing someone ever said to you on a run? Or, did someone share an insight you found particularly helpful?