Posts Tagged ‘swimming’

The endorphin hit parade

February 4, 2022

The winter, it lingers.

Six degrees at 6 a.m. Is it an omen, d’ye think?

Probably not. Just the pre-caffeination brain spinning its wheels like a 1996 F-150 with a bed full of firewood, half in the ditch on a snowy Colorado afternoon.

And yeah, I’ve been there.

Today’s high may be that in name only, so I’m thinking ixnay on the ike-bay. A short run seems sensible, if you will concede that running — with empty hands, anyway — can ever be sensible.

I don’t mind it, as long as I’m not breaking ankles. But running will never be my first choice if the temperature is 40° or better and there isn’t snow on the deck.

The Mitchell High School swim team in 1970, the year we went 11-0.

Last on my endorphin hit parade is swimming. I spent 10 years on swim teams, ages 8 to 18, and swam laps off and on afterward in Tucson, Pueblo, Denver, and Bibleburg, because I was a member of some gym that had a 25-meter pool and why not?

But I got tired of smelling like chemicals and wearing green eyebrows and feeling my hair freeze between the gym and the car every February. The hair freezing is no longer an issue, but the rest of it still applies. A friend of a similar vintage quips, “We all end up in the pool,” but I notice he ain’t there yet.

Plus there’s a weird sonic vibe in the pool area, like you’re stroking through a Louisiana Best Buy with a leaky roof during a hurricane. And you have to see other old dudes bareass in the shower, which should be part of any “Scared Straight” programs the schools are running these days.

“This is what prison looks like, kids.”

“Jesus Christ! I’ve shoplifted my last pack of smokes, honest!”

That right there is a kid who’ll take up running with empty hands. Unless he steals a bike first.

Paddy melt

March 18, 2021

The ground drank that snow like a college kid hitting a beer
during spring break in Florida.

Our St. Paddy’s snow lasted about as long as bipartisanship in Congress.

Herself went out for a short run yesterday afternoon and reported that the trails were barely tacky. And this morning is as you see.

When the weather gets goofy like this I miss running. It’s such a convenient workout when God is pitching changeups at you. Efficient. Minimal gear. No coasting.

A 45-minute trail run isn’t long enough to be boring, and it doesn’t gnaw off a sizable chunk of your day the way cycling does. You can get started early, and finish early, too. Nobody honks at you, unless you’re running past a goose with attitude.

Running and swimming are probably our purest forms of exercise, although an indoor pool is an expensive accessory. You can always acquire property on some placid sandy beach in a tropical paradise, but that’s even pricier than a Y membership.

And the ocean likes to go for a run every now and then too. Sometimes it takes you with it.

Oh, Lord, I can feel myself getting talked into it. Running, not swimming; we got sand, but this ain’t no tropical paradise. My feets have already failed me once. Spring can’t come soon enough.