In the past ten days I’ve started running, which for me is quite an accomplishment, as I’ve never been known to run (except for running-on with words in a blog or a letter).
Last summer I had the intention of starting to run. I went outside one morning and started running up the traffic-congested street/highway on which I live, and after five blocks I had a coughing fit because all the car exhaust triggered my asthma. I barely made it back home just walking, and I coughed for the rest of the day. And so I decided I would stick with hiking, up in the mountains. It’s prettier there anyway and more peaceful. But not as convenient for everyday exercise. So I didn’t get my exercise.
Early this year, I decided I would try again. I found an automobile-free road I liked (the closed road to East Canyon, for those who are in the know) that is only a few miles from my house, and I started going there when there was still snow on the ground. I went two times, and then I got sick and didn’t feel good enough to go again for a couple of weeks. And then a couple of weeks became a month, and so on, bringing us up to this day.
It seems like my lungs always conspire against the rest of my body. Everything else has to stay fat and weak so that they can cough and wheeze. You may have won those battles, lungs, but the war has only just begun!
So I started driving up there again, and running. I’ve gone three times in the past week, with decent results. It was actually kind of boring. When there’s nothing but trees and that mile-marker way in the distance, I don’t feel like I’m getting anywhere. And on Thursday evening it seemed like half of Salt Lake City was up on that road replete with their spandex and their bicycles. And they all went so much faster than my lazy legs could go, and smirked condescendingly as they passed.
And then this morning I wanted to go running, but I didn’t want to drive up there to Lycra-land. I decided I could run up a hill to a higher, residential area behind my house, and maybe the exhaust wouldn’t bother me up there because the streets aren’t as busy. So I tried it, and it worked, and I ran further this morning than I have up until this point ever. It seems silly, but I’m pretty excited that I can just do this from home because now it will make it easy for me to do this almost every day. I finally found a convenient way to get some decent exercise.
So despite my many failures as a human being, that is my big accomplishment for today and the past week. I’m happy and excited about it.
Oh, and every time I go running I wear my “Ohio Democrats for Clinton-Gore 1996” t-shirt. Maybe that is why I get all the condescending smirks from the cycling champions.