A bad thing for me about living in Indiana is that Winter is so cold. I realize that some of the coldness of Winter has to do with my growing older. I don’t remember Winter being as cold when I was growing up, but all evidence indicates it was actually colder. Nonetheless, every Winter seems colder and longer than any previous Winter I can remember. It’s only a problem because Winter means taking my physical fitness indoors. I spend the months from November to April running on a treadmill in the basement of the Port-to-Port office building. While it’s a good enough workout to keep me in shape, it leaves me feeling like a running zombie.
I’ve found that the thing that has kept me running for more than 30 years is the mental benefit I derive from it. Running is my way of communing with god. It’s my spiritual connection to the living world. I just can’t get that connection from a treadmill in the basement. I try to compensate by spending more time meditating after each run. I walk my dog, Gracie, to spend some time outdoors. I learn to suffice with these poor substitutions for the great outdoor run…until I get to have that first outdoor run of the year. After that, the treadmill feels like a death sentence.
Well, that outdoor run came a few weeks ago. Since then I’ve been unable to sustain even twenty minutes on the treadmill. I ache for nice weather, and I take advantage of every little bit we get. I own so much high-tech running wear that I never use because I hate the cold weather. This Spring I’ve been putting it to use. It’s made me a nicer person to be around.