July 3rd 2016
Today I went running for the first time in, like, two weeks. For the past, like, two weeks I’ve been living at my girlfriend’s house whilst her parents were on holiday. Whilst she was at work, I planned to spend the daylight hours feverishly working away at one of the many many projects I have undertaken. Instead, I chose to enjoy my last week or so of relaxation time/freedom before I start my new, full time, 9am-6pm job. (I start tomorrow) So I spent most of the time, whilst she was at work, sat in her house playing Football Manager and cuddling with her cat – who, by the way, I am horridly allergic to.
A week in bed was fun and all, but I went stir crazy. I had occasional breaks from my state of bedriddenness to do a night shift at work, or go out for dinner with either my girlfriend or my family, and I played a bit of golf, but essentially I just stayed in bed and went crazy because I was staying in bed too much.
“Enjoy this time,” Alice said. “It’ll be the last free time you have during a weekday for the rest of your life.” Dramatic, but partly true. However, I do kinda feel like I wasted my last week of free time before full time employment. So that’s why, when I “moved” back home today I decided to go out for a run.
But, you see, as a combination of two runless, lazy, crappy food filled weeks of no exercise, plus the dinner of six sausages, quinoa and regret I’d made myself to eat, I got halfway through my run before it transitioned into a walk. I could feel my dinner bouncing in my stomach, so I had to stop running before I tasted it in my mouth again. Walking back the mile and half I’d just run away from home was fine, though. It gave me a chance to think.
The thing I like about running isn’t the running itself. The thing I like is the feeling after the run. When you’re low on oxygen, and your skin feels different, and your breath can’t keep up with your heartbeat. And the only thing you have to focus on is getting oxygen into your bloodstream. And then, because you are reduced to only thinking about the most neanderthal of basic survival skills (Lesson 1 To Staying Alive: Breathing) It allows for a completely clear mind, where you can think without clutter.
Usually I spend this ‘panting’ time sat on my doorstep, breathing and thinking and waiting for my Dad to notice I’m home and bring me out a glass of water. Today I spent the time walking. I had to re-cover the home stretch somehow. It was 8PM and the sun was on it’s way down.. Usually I run in the morning; the after dinner run was perhaps a bad idea but at least it was pretty outside.
So I got to walk for half an hour, and think, and clear my head before my first day at a new job tomorrow, and through my headphones I listened to a new album from one of my favourite artists. And life was good.
Until tomorrow, go for a walk.