Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Mining the Grand

Our older daughter Anna running a relay race at St. Michaels Elementary School's Field Day.

More often than we like to admit, kids know more than grown-ups. Especially in matters of attitude, curiosity, and adventure.

For a child, a walk around the block can--and often is--a grand expedition (not to be confused with an excursion, which burns much more gas). Our girls spot rabbits, squirrels, flowers, find suitable sticks, and set the stage for wherever we might be going that I wasn't aware of.

It is so easy to forgo mining the grand in the commonplace. This is a practice and an attitude that I often have to re-learn in my running. And for me, the take-home mantra is: any run is better than no run.

There have been a number of occasions of late, where I have thrown in a 3- or 4-mile run where I had hoped to do a longer, more substantial run. Time is not always so kind to parents of young children, who have overfull dance cards. I fight the all-or-nothing attitude that says, if I can't go out for an hour or 90 minutes, I don't have time to run. Horse----, bull----, insert your preferred hogwash term here.

I have had a blast with these shorter runs on frequently tread paths through Easton. Change the pace, look around, plug in the i-pod, and make it fun. With either of our girls, a 25-yard run through a grassy field or through the Oxford Park could pass for the Boston Marathon or Western States 100.

My only recent run of more than 5 miles was an 8-9-mile run in Wittman with our golden retriever Ivan and Mike and Luke (yellow lab) Keene, which had a 20-minute swim in the river with dogs thrown in before the final 2 miles. Ditching the rules of running and making a Tom Sawyer-esque adventure of it, made for a great run and a great day.

When I watch our 5-year-old run to be the first to the swings, or run in a relay at her school's Field Day; or watch our 2-year-old scream and laugh following her sister, or face-plant down a soft hill, pick herself up, laughing, and keep on trucking, I remember why I run.

1 comment:

Nancy Toby said...

Awww, hopefully both my girls will be at that school in the fall in the pre-K class!!