I like having gone jogging

I don’t really enjoy jogging. Sure, I like being outside. I like to see the neighborhood and get away from my all too computer oriented work. So, I’m not sure what it is but the fact remains that I do enjoy coming up with excuses not to go running. Nothing works like a good distraction that hits me just at the beginning of my window of free time. Love those. Love to be caught up in something and then realize, “Oops, I can’t go today. I’ll go tomorrow.”

Which is really not a great sign. Discipline is certainly a preferred trait over distractability. But I’ll go through long periods of time where the latter vanquishes the former, sometimes for worthy causes, sometimes for whatever happens to intrude.

Because, the fact is I think running is kind of boring. Maybe if I had someone to run with it’d be better, I honestly don’t know.

I like having gone jogging though. I like the feeling of my body feeling tired, physically stretched and exercised. I like how my brain seems to work sharper, filled with a curious bit of increased hope. I like how I somehow get a perspective in which things aren’t nearly as bad as they seemed before and maybe even a whole lot better. I seem to pray a little bit more, am less annoyed by my pet frustrations, and more often than not running sparks a new thought or idea or analogy. And I do love to collect analogies, good or bad. I think I’d run an analogy store if I could bottle them up and sell them for a nice profit.

The last few weeks I’ve gotten back into running regularly. Not because I have found a newfound delight in going out the door and up the street (literally, as it’s hilly where I live). No. Instead it’s because I am going camping this weekend.

The campsite is at the end of about a mile long trail. The trail starts at sea level and goes up a rather steep, rather intense hill, with steps that like to mock legs that are not used to moving.

I don’t like to be mocked, least of all by a trail, one of the few things that can and should be properly stepped upon and vanquished.

Thoughts of that trail, carrying fifty or more pounds of camping gear and whatnot got me away from my desk and got me outside, where the hills of the neighborhood are at times just about as steep as that trail. At first I had to walk sections of the few miles I try. After getting back into it now I don’t walk even a small stretch, even on the steepest parts near the end.

So, I have a lot more hope that this weekend my body will be up to the task, that I won’t be embarrassed, that I’ll actually be able to enjoy watching the beautiful scenery as I make my way around instead of my eyes drooping as the muscles of my legs begin to burn and then try to quit.

I don’t really enjoy running all that much. But it’s interesting how having a goal, having some purpose in mind besides the discipline was the very thing that got me out the door. It wasn’t enough for me to just enjoy how I felt afterward. I have to have a task, a purpose, an end, a goal in mind.

The question now bugging me is whether I’ll keep up the discipline after I get back this next week. Hopefully, as maybe now that the habit is formed it might be enough to keep at it.

Of course, it also helps a lot that the weather is utterly beautiful and perfect. I’m just not sure that I should have that as the reason for going out and running regularly. Seems like that’s not going to last. But I do think the habit does need to last, because it’s good for me—really, really good for me. Maybe I might even start enjoying running one of these days, if I keep trying.

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