No surprise I woke up this morning sick. I blew what seemed like a pint of florescent green crap out of my nose and my right ear is plugged completely.. 100% deaf. Which sucks because I just downloaded ~40 new songs on to my i-pod and had looked forward to this mornings run and a chance to listen to a Beatles album (my first). Dark, freezing cold, icy and on no sleep I had a great run. HR was elevated but my legs were under me.. 13 miles in 1:24 slipping and sliding. My piriformis and glutes were border line cramping from sitting in my car yesterday but I muscled through it.
I realize that some times I don't want to run, and just as it is with cookies and shoes.. the difference between WANT and NEED is huge. My motivation waned big time today and I asked myself 20 times while I was getting dressed in the dark- tired and sick.. why am I doing this? I thought of many excuses, none of which really convinced me that going back to bed would yield more satisfaction at the end of the day. So I started out.. slow and stiff. The bones in my feet, which I am convinced are broken, screaming and complaining. And as I warmed up.. and as I felt that fluid release of warmth through my muscles.. as mile 2 passed in 6:20.. I remembered why I do this. As I clicked off my middle miles effortlessly fast.. it was obvious why I do this. I love being fit, I love being healthy and I love pushing my body and mind.
A few years back Chuck and I were standing on the side of the road out by Carter Lake eating.. we saw two fairly fit cyclists fly by obviously putting in an effort.. trading pulls on the front. I looked at Chuck and said "We should catch those guys".. He replied "Yep.. let's do it". And neither of us budged. We kept eating our Powerbars and chatting about how nice the weather was and why those goddamn cows were staring us down (remind me to tell the story of Chuck mooning a cow on a run). After a while we slowly climbed back on our bikes and spun up to speed.. got loose.. and caught the two cyclists after not too long. They jumped (as roadies do) and got on our wheels.. and soon faded off the back, the pace too fast, as Chuck and I rolled back to town at an effort that would that still allow us to run a quick marathon.
It was, and still is, looking back at that day that I think defines why I exercise. As those two cyclists rode by, and as we decided to catch them, and as neither of us felt the need to rush.. it's that feeling of fitness and confidence that we gain from training... training harder and more and farther and harder and faster.
On days when you don't want to go out the door.. think that there will come a day when someone will go by you and you will either wish you could catch them.. or you will go ahead and finish your Powerbar and KNOW that you will still catch them.
I just put this on my i-pod.. the lyrics have had a profound effect on my thoughts..