Saturday, December 20, 2008

Winter Wonderland

Today is Winter Solstice. Throughout the history of the southwest, today was a “power” day. The dreamers, shamans, and sunwatchers had their biggest challenge today – to make Father Sun decided to not give up on humans and turn back to the south to start the beginning of the seasons again. The people would wear their ceremonial outfits and dance their hearts out all day and all night in celebration of LIFE and the hopes of being pronounced worthy. Somehow it always worked out. :)

This morning, when I went for my run, it seemed that some of that power was still resonating… there was feeling of being blissfully alive in the air.

Maybe it was the crisp and cool air in my lungs, the frost in the grass, running through falling leaves, the peaceful quiet of the park I was running in – normally full of shouts of little leaguers and metal bats striking balls - but it was serene out there.

This morning’s weather is not what I would consider “winter” weather. In Massachusetts, today’s weather would have happened in early September, and it would be “Fall” weather, but it was as close as I want to get to cold and snow. If I squinted, I could see the glimmer of the frost and dream that it was snow. I could feel the cold on my face, but it didn’t sting. It was beautiful. Fall was always my favorite running weather – when it feels better to run than to walk, because it keeps you warm – and today was exactly what I was looking for.

I got outside, I ran just under 4 miles, and I felt great doing it. I have to admit that through all of my training, I never thought that I would ever “feel good” while running. Even when I had successful runs, or embraced the running high after a run, I never felt good. Since I decided to modify my training plan and do the P.F. Chang’s ½ Marathon, I have never felt so great! When I start to run I actually feel strong and tall and powerful. It may not last the full ½, but my shorter runs feel almost natural! It’s an added bonus that I didn’t expect to happen, but I am even more grateful that I have stuck with it all this time.

Several years ago, I found the perfect Christmas cards. They were a deep and beautiful blue, with a bright and excessively sparkly snowflake on them. The message said “Once a year, everything becomes magical. Wishing you a season of wonder.” I hope that you all get to experience the magic of the season, and the joy of family time and peace!

P.S. Shout out to the Sole Sports folks who spent 30 minutes with me yesterday diagnosing my second toe numbness as Morton’s Neuroma, and gave me several easy and cheap solutions – tying my shoelaces differently, and a medical pad to put underneath the “metatarsal arch” to prevent pressure in that spot. I tried the shoelace thing first, and I can feel the difference already. No numbness. They really really rock at Sole Sports.

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