My friend and I have recently resumed trail running, once a week. Well, trail "wunning" or "wogging" - maybe "ralking"? Some combination of walking jogging running. We run wearing masks and we keep safe distance from one another. We meet early on a weekend morning, to ensure there are no crowds. We have a favorite park where we meet, and the views these past weeks have been spectacular - sunlight radiating through the branches of the trees, bouncing and shimmering on the creek, highlighting the deep soft green of moss. Let me share a few photos from our last run together - a beautiful, mild morning here in the Washington, D.C. area.
Funny, when I go out for a jog by myself, the first 10-15 minutes are a negative monologue along the lines of - "this sucks!", "oh my goodness, I don't think I can do this today," "why am I doing this?", "am I moving?" ,"maybe today I will cut this short", "what's wrong with my breath?", "why do I feel so lousy?", and more. If I just make it through those first minutes, I'm fine and I jog with ease for the rest of the run - but I really detest and resist those first minutes by myself on a run.
With my friend, the run is fun from the get-go, from the moment our eyes meet. It's so great! We just go! slowly, slowly, slowly, through the leaves and the mud, over rocks and stumps, under the bare trees, dodging puddles, up, down, and around hilly curves, all the while, chattering, conversing, sharing aloud, together. It's a multi-sensory experience - feeling the cold air, noticing the freshness, hearing the birds and the wind, getting a little messy, seeing such beauty in the woods. It's such a blast.
These outings have been the perfect antidote to this pandemic, and all this time isolated indoors. Running outdoors clears my head, relaxes me, takes my anxious edge off. Running feels good, cleansing. I forget my age, forget my size, I just move and enjoy. To be out in the woods with a friend, running and walking trails - ahhh, this is so fantastic! I am blessed.