Wednesday morning, I awoke still feeling the deep-in-my-bones weariness that plagued me the night before. I didn’t want to go for a run. I got up, fed the dogs, put a load of laundry in the washer, and dutifully put on my running clothes. By the time I got back upstairs to put my contacts in my eyes and my hair in a ponytail, Chef was up. “Whatcha doin’?” he asked.
“Getting ready to go for a run,” I said. “I don’t want to. But I’ll probably feel better afterward.”
So I went.
The sun had scrubbed his face with morning frost. The sky was cloudless, and even the airplanes flew high enough that their contrails did not mar the perfect blue. Still, tight shins, a stiff knee, and sharp bunion pain did not help my lack of motivation. The weariness I felt seemed to have settled in my lungs so that I couldn’t get a deep breath, and in my head so that my mind was foggy and sluggish.
The five mile out-and-back route I chose took me to county roads lined by cornfields and farm houses. It’s a quieter route than my five mile loop, with less traffic. For the first two and a half miles, the only vehicle I saw was a tractor, its machinery trailing behind.
Birds chirped their good mornings and small animals rustled in the knee-high, dew-sparkled grass. My knee loosened up and my shins let go of their tightness, but my hips started to ache a bit and the bunion never quite stopped hurting. The cobwebs started to shake loose from my brain, but too many thoughts in my head still clouded my thinking. The fresh, cool air felt wonderful on my cheeks, but while my lungs were able to take in more air than when I started, I never quite managed the deep, cleansing breath I wanted.
A five mile run, with walk breaks every mile. Certainly not my best effort, and even as I crossed the railroad tracks that signal that I’m almost home, I had to admit that I still didn’t want to be running. But I knew I needed to run. I needed to try to get through the funk that I was in. And even if I didn’t escape the mood, my legs got moving and my skin soaked in the cold sunshine.
I’ll have to try again another day.