Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Read or Swim?

Every Tuesday afternoon I take Simon to his forty-five minute swimming lesson at the Y. While I'm there I like to jump into the lap lane and swim. This is my only easy opportunity to get into the pool, so it's usually the only time I swim every week.

This from an ex-triathlete who used to swim three or four times a week on top of everything else.

But this Tuesday I was tired. My legs were sore from yoga class Monday, and they were tired from all the running. I had run in the morning with the dogs, so I already had my workout done for the day. And my new book, Doubt: A History, had just arrived in the UPS truck.

I entertained a vision of myself sitting on the bleachers at the pool reading the book, cocooned in the warm, humid air. It was an enticing little scene.

Why didn't I give into it? Why did I leave the book on the counter and grab my swim bag on the way out the door? What, exactly am I trying to prove?

I find it very interesting when people tell me that they would love to start some sort of exercise program, but they just can't seem to get motivated. This baffles me, stuck as I am in this bizarro world in which I can't seem to stop being motivated to get out and run or swim or bike or whatever.

I wonder what need this is filling, all of this trotting around town, racking up the miles and the hours on the roads and trails. Endurance athletes are a weird bunch. Especially ultra-runners. We try to pass ourselves off as mellow and laid back, but just try to cancel our morning run. Then the truth comes out. Without the run, we are undone. Or at least I am.

A day without some sort of exercise? I shudder to think of it.

I'm off to run with the dogs......

1 comment:

  1. It's the endorphins baby. Some years ago, I was on an anti-depressant and really did not want to be. The doctor told me the only way off was to exercise "more regularly" and that was when I started running. A year later, I was off the meds, and I've been pursuing some sort of regular exercise ever since. I do not, however, have the same motivation as my triathlete friends. I just said to my hubby last night that I can't even imagine doing two a days for weeks on end.


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