Today marks the end of our third week in the Kalahari, and I wish that I could paint a picture of rainbows and ponies, and a mom who dug deep, found her strong and conquered the elements. But alas... I'm still trudging along like a total beginner, and can't even complete back-to-back airstrip intervals without taking at least half a dozen rest breaks. It sucks.
So much so that I'm starting to feel something that I haven't felt since high school and varsity days: I'm dreading our runs just a little. No, wait - I'm dreading it a lot. Huffing down that airstrip, pushing 40+ (squabbling) kilograms over loose rocks and cattle poop, interspersed with pockets of soft, stops-you-dead-in-your-tracks Kalahari sand, is hardly the stuff that runner's highs are made of. Or even just enjoyable family outings, for that matter. No rainbows or ponies over here right now.
Yet I know that I need to run. For my own sake, but especially also the kids'. It makes me a better me. So we celebrated our first three weeks in the Kalahari with a (200+ km) trip to Vryburg - the closest "big" town (and, more importantly, source of dark chocolate). We stocked up on the good stuff (our first fix in three weeks...!), reading material and might have snuck in a little extra retail therapy. And you know what? I think it did the trick: It gave me a mental boost and I'm fired up and as motivated as ever to obliterate that darn strip.
Bring on the intervals!