I had my mind set at the beginning of the week that after work today, I'd hit the gym. When I woke up this morning, the first thought that crossed my mind was, there's no way in hell I'm going to the gym today. To add to that thought, I had a relatively crappy day at work. (Where I felt like all the problems were dumped on me, demanding customers demanded me, and I was pulled in fifteen different directions... and well, you know the rest of the drill. Oh, Anita! Why are we always working opposite shifts?! I neeeeeed youuu...).
When I got home, I found out I had the entire house to myself. That never happens. Ahh, peace and quiet. More reason to stay home. I changed out of my work clothes and started doing some arm exercises. Then I decided to clean my exercise equipments. While I was at it, I started cleaning other things... Wiping things down. Tidying things up. Then, I thought, screw it. I have too much energy.
I strapped on my running shoes. Grabbed a bottle of water. And off I went to the Killarney tracks. The weather was perfect. Usually, I start off walking one lap before I jog. You can call it warm-up, but really it's more people watching and scoping out the scene. Not for any reason but simply to people watch.
I always thought I don't enjoy running tracks. But after being a little frustrated not finding a route I was happy with, or running the same ol' route everytime, this wasn't so bad after all. For one, I can easily track the distance. It was still the same deal. The rhythmic pounding of the pavement. The heart pumping. The way it distracts me and washes everything from my mind. The difference was, even though I was running on my own... in my own pace... on my own time... I felt like I had company.
I made six good laps and was feeling pretty good. Don't know why the number six seemed like a lot, but when I looked at the time, it hasn't even been 15 minutes. I stopped counting the laps or giving myself a time, I remember jotting down (back in the day when there was not much to do in Victoria but to focus it all on running) that the best thing that worked for me was to not give myself a limit or even a goal.
I would start with a jog. No timer. No finish line. Maybe a pattern if I feel like it. (Today, it was run 400m, walk 200m, and repeat.) I soon realize that I just want to keep on running. The finish line doesn't seem far away when there isn't one. The time doesn't seem like it's been forever if there's no timer. And then my mind starts to drift... I run by people gabbing, children laughing, and street hockey players shouting commands at each other. People were doing steps at the stairs by the swings, and others were doing leap frog on the patch of grass in the middle of the track. Some people were wearing jackets. Others wearing sweatshirts. But most were in t-shirts and shorts. Including myself. When I get into that humdrum, I don't want it to end.
Oh, I gotta get gas for my car.
And it always takes something on my to-do checklist in reality that wakes me up and snaps me out of that mode. 40 minutes later, I was still on my high.
The high I get from running, I haven't been getting it everytime. But when I do, it comes back like riding a bike. Familiar and natural.
Still running on my high, I came home, showered, ate dinner, made lunch for tomorrow and did my laundry. And now, finally sitting down at the computer.
A crappy day at work? I don't remember it at all.