Wednesday, December 16, 2015

A run with a friend

I had planned to take as many days off as I could after last Saturday's race, and 4 mile run with Rick afterwards around Greenfield Lake. Partly to give my body and mind a little extended rest, and also in the hopes that my lower leg/ foot aches could clear up some more. Ideally two weeks off with no running, to follow the advice many college and high school coaches prescribe their runners. But... this is much easier said then done, and truth be told volume wise I have not run that much since the end of summer, though the intensity has been fairly moderate.

However, the point of this rest or reduction in running is also to kind of reset and recalibrate my "running soul" as we head into a new year. Ripe as always with new challenges, ambitions, plans, races to be run... where we kind of take the long view as runners surveying the vast frontier that stretches far, far beyond the horizon. Infinite paths and byways will inevitably greet us on our pilgrimages into the next calendar year. It's exciting, fresh...and sweet like the dew lying atop springtime's green grasses.

First though winter awaits. For some of us it's another foray into the teeth of marathon training plans as we eyeball the Big Race in March or April.  For others... it is hiding indoors and patiently waiting for mother nature to thaw. While we get in some runs here and there, perhaps on the weekends when we can actually find some daylight to run in.

Yesterday I got a text, and then a phone call right as I got home from work from a friend I've known for going on a decade now. They wanted to run... so I said sure I'll be over in a few minutes.

We went for an easy 5 mile run, most of which was on the trails in the Carolina Beach State Park. It was a gorgeous mid December day, sunny skies and temperatures feeling balmy in the 60s. In general, as humans we tend to sometimes not see what may be going on close by to us in the internal lives of others... unless it concretely manifests in the external world of which we happen to share with them.

There's something spiritually magic at times about a shared run. Barriers which may hinder open and honest communication tend to fall away.  Our own inhibitions about revealing our true selves seem to slowly melt as the miles slip by. And to sort of borrow a saying from commercial culture, what happens on the run stays on the run. Without either party ever having to acknowledge as such. For we runners all know this is to be inherently true.

After I got home I was so glad that I went on this seemingly innocuous run. Glad that I didn't rigidly stick to some arbitrary run schedule I had formulated for myself.  For I felt like I was at that hour in life, right where I was supposed to be.  Hopefully, I got to be a good friend.