One step.

"A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step."
                                                     -Buddhist saying

Never truer than when you are going to run eight or nine miles after a long and lazy hiatus.

Those first steps, I think about all of the things that I would rather be doing. Drinking a glass of Malbec. Smearing brie over crackers and enjoying the warm evening with friends. Sitting in an air conditioned theater watching explosions and excitement. Curling up with my latest read. Doing trailwork with friends- check out http://fomp.org for a great hands-on 'be the change you want to see' group that regularly improves our trails.

And yet, I continue. One foot in front of the other. One step. And then another. I think of the Buddhist saying as I throw an inner "I don't wanna" tantrum. This bratty reluctance goes on for several hundred feet and then I start to find my groove. My songs kick in, my breathing regulates and my muscles start to melt into the run. I start noticing all of my little markers on the trail that tell me exactly where I am. There is the bent tree with the bark stripped off by a bear. A few hundred feet further is the perfect view of Elephant Rock through a frame of pines. A few hundred feet further lies a discarded water bottle top half-buried in the trail dirt. I always mean to grab it, as it is technically trash, but it has become something of the landscape...

Courtesy of The Vaile Museum


I notice all of these little things and eight miles glides by. Okay, honestly, the first seven and a half miles glides by. The last mile or so, I am painfully aware of my IT band and the price I will pay for NOT running faithfully the last couple of weeks.

Kinda like life when I start to really think about it. One step at a time. Even when it aches.


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