A couple weeks ago due to road construction I was forced onto a new trail in Forest Park. It was the first time in several years I started my run from a different trailhead. I was annoyed and my enthusiasm for a run quickly soured; but as I started running, unfamiliarity greeted me at every turn.
I’ve been struggling with lingering calf injuries for a while (yes, both calves), so I’ve been taking it easy; keeping the miles to a minimum. The result is I’m out of shape, don’t push myself, and am frustrated. I put “run” on my weekly to-do list, as if it were a chore.
But on a new trail that day my interest was piqued. What was around the next corner? Past that towering tree? I had a renewed enjoyment for running – it didn’t feel like work. I went back the next day to the same trail and ran for over an hour. I could have gone for two. Was it my new running tights that provided the extra pep in my step? My guess is that I took a fresh approach to what had become routine for me.
I started looking forward to running again. I was thinking ahead to races and running goals. Did I stumble onto to something? Could this experience represent how I should approach 2017? (Apologies if this brings up the Seinfeld “Opposite” episode for some – I can’t help but go there myself).
The irony is that if I continue running on this same trail, in time it too will come to be routine. But what new insights, revelations, and outcomes will have materialized had I not gone down this path?
It was during this run I made the decision to take on 2017 the same way I did on the trail that day—with curiosity, vigor, and optimism. I’ll nudge myself to do things differently; take calculated risks. I won’t let fear or rejection dissuade me. I’ll use passion as my guide and be open to whatever the year may bring for me. But most of all, I’ll work on removing “run” from my to-do list.
Happy New Year