Noel and I take turns running these days. He gets Monday, Wednesday, Friday and I get Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday. For the most part it works out, but sometimes Noel goes bike riding with a friend on my day or I sleep in because the kids miraculously decided not to wake up before 7am. By the time Noel heads off to work my window of opportunity to go on a run by myself has closed. As I look at the things I need to do, exercising starts to get edged out by all the things/people that need to be attended to and I realize that if I don’t just get my butt out the door it won’t happen. So, I leave the dirty dishes on the table, fasten the kids into the double jogger even though they’re still in pajamas, shut the door on the toys strewn across the living room, and hit the neighborhood trail for a decent 2.5 mile mental clarifying session.
I remember reading a shoe ad in Runner’s World several years ago. (Maybe even up to 12 year ago now that I think about it. Geez.) It had a guy running (duh) and the caption talked about how he ran to clear his head and take out the mental trash accumulating in his mind and ended by saying, “Maybe that’s why runner’s and garbage men are the only people out on the street early in the morning.” The ad said it much more poetically and I just wasted way too much time googling variations of that idea to try and find it, but I definitely feel that way about running. By the time I get back from a run I feel much more capable to deal with the piles of dishes, the whining children, and the endless to-do list. Instead of feeling behind, I actually feel like I’m ahead, at least for a little bit.