There are times when running helps my brain more than my body. Today was one of those days. The weather was soggy in the morning but afternoon turned out positively balmy as the temperature inched above 37F (I run in the Midwest). I was excited to get out of my office and onto the road for some work. I had one meeting after another and needed to breathe some air that had not gone through an HVAC system.
The sky was mostly cloudy with the sun peeking through. “I saw it”, as the sun rays dried my running path. The sun is affirming when the dampness and cold have moved into my chest and bones. The ice was gone, the puddles had dried and I could run in long-sleeved shirt, tights without running gloves or a hat. I even decided to listen to the wind in the trees; leaving my headphones behind at home.
It took about a quarter mile for my legs to get into their familiar rhythm that allows me to run without thinking about each step. I stood a little straighter; I breathed a little deeper; my mind and heart glad for the brief warmth and sunlight. With shorter days of winter in the Northern Hemisphere, I long for the green of spring and the long days of summer when I can run into the sunset after work.
My brain quickly migrated to a silly song, then to thoughts of my funny friends and then to work on a little problem that I needed to work out. I found myself grateful for the day, for life and for each little turn as I ran along the sidewalk. In the daylight, I run on the sidewalk; at dusk, I run in the street near the curb as the streets do not usually have ruts from trees or wet leaves that can be slick.
Ah, life is good in the Midwest and I am feeling the prayers and meditations along my path. My heart loves the pace; my knees love the movement. I enjoy the afternoon air with little traffic to interrupt my street run. The activity is as good for my brain as the activity is as good for my body. This “running thing” is better than a drug.