Nature Trail Runners

A running club with weekly Group Runs in Aurora, IL., Montgomery, IL. and Oswego, IL.

All You Need Is Love -by Caroline Tonozzi

valentines day

In the spirit of ol’ St. Valentine’s Day, I’m here to talk about love. Not a kissy-kissy kind of love. This is about a love for those in my inner running circle. This post is dedicated to all those I run with, talk about running with, watch me run, and love me because I run. I’m talking about my BRFs (best running friends).

First off, I have to talk about my pups. Not a dog person? You must meet my girls, Tess, Charlotte, and Cordelia. I have the best dogs. I know, everybody says that about their own pets. They are three dogs plucked from the canine versions of the Land of Misfit Toys. I run with Charlotte and Cordelia. Charlotte, my newest and most clumsy, will run until I tell her to stop. Scruffy nugget Cordelia does her absolute best to keep up with us. Tess, my oldest, would rather nap. I leave Tess in the car while the rest of us loop around the trails. There’s no talk of pace, splits, races, shoes, GU, or anything for that matter. It’s just me, the dogs, and the trail. They do not judge, want to please, and love me without condition. We go until we are done. Love!

Do I only run with dogs? No. I love running with the folks in the Nature Trail Runners. Don’t get me wrong; running solo has its perks. No time constraints, no waiting, no explanations to anyone about how your pants don’t fit right that day. I run solo quite a bit. My work doesn’t always allow for traditional weekend (or weeknight) runs. When I can, I run with the group. These are people who love to run just as much as I do (and maybe more), and have made what would normally be an excruciating task that much more bearable. Ever run a 20 miler? Brutal. I hadn’t until one of my BRFs said “dude, you can do it.” You can cover lots of topics during a 20 miler. We talk about everything and anything-family, work, feelings, food, vermin (yes-vermin!) I have exchanged recipes, heard about new places to eat or travel, and talked about my pets, family, races, chocolate, and the weather. Nothing is off limits. I can open up and talk about things on the trail, knowing what is said on the trail, stays on the trail. I know that if I stumble and fall, I have someone who will pick me up and help me keep going. That’s what friends do.

No post about my inner circle would be complete without mention of my own immediate family. I am so lucky to have a family that does not run. Why? It makes me into a running superstar. I like the role of superstar, even though it’s only by default. If they cannot reach me, they know I’m probably out running. They (gently) poke fun at my “gear” and may think I am “crazy” for running as much as I do. They may not understand my incessant desire to run an ultra-marathon. I know they believe in me. They want me to succeed, and that means the world to me.

Thank you to my running family and my own family (MJT, TAT, Maria, Angela, Daniel, and Nicholas). Without you, I would be a lonely girl with just her shoes and her dogs.

Who do you count as your BRF? Do you prefer running alone or with friends? Drop a comment below and share with us!

-Caroline Tonozzi
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This entry was posted on February 14, 2013 by in Category: Articles and tagged , , , , .
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