running along the river is one of the privileges of this city in the almost-summer, summer, and still-barely-summertime. it seems that a full quarter of the city laces up the sneaks and hits the trail — i wonder why they do it? each person has a different reason for being there… are they fitness nuts? reluctant joggers? trying to impress the girl/guy with whom they’re running/biking/blading? hmmm… most of us run with little wires coming out of our ears — are we grooving to smooth jazz? rocking out to metal? (smooth jazz?? i wonder who could possibly run to smooth jazz… it seems you’d just sloow d o o w w n u n t i l . . .

(so far, my favorite band to run to is semisonic… i love this band!! loved them since i lived in the state right below theirs, since “closing time” was the thing to sing at every graduation. if you’ve never tried their tunes, hop over to www.danwilsonmusic.com or www.semisonic.com to give a listen… it’s good stuff, maynard.)

i’m always encouraged (is this mean?) to see that i’m not the slowest person out there. i’m nowhere near the fastest (ha!) but i can usually pass at least one person on the course of my two or three miles. when i’m passing them, though, i’m always thinking that they’re probably at the end of some terrific eight-miler, and my wee little moral victory of passing them a mile out is pretty pathetic… oh well.

i ran in high school… suffice to say, cross-country and i were not friends. i never quite licked the mental challenge of pushing my body to do those races, and the seasons were pretty dismal. (really dismal). i laid off running for years, aside from the occasional string of three jogs here, another there — but an overwhelming desire to know that i could — if i wanted to — propelled me into the running store this month to pick up a pair of shoes before i could change my mind. i walked in, told the lean, mean running machine by the door what sort of running i wanted to do, and walked out with the second pair he brought out: Saucony Grid Omnis. Grey.

i like my running shoes. very much.

tying them on my feet is like a new little victory each time. i am making the decision to go out, again, and once i go out, i will run, and i will come back having run. i just got back a little while ago from a three-miler (i think — must get accurate measure of trail) and my legs have that vaguely achey feeling that is nearly euphoric to me. discipline! endurance! perseverance! that is what my achey-ness means right now. if i can push my body to finish something on a trail, i can push the rest of me to stick out other patience-requiring situations currently in play… and i end each run relieved to know just that.

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