Monday, September 24, 2007

Last Days of Summer


You couldn't tell from today's weather, but summer is over, fall is here, and winter isn't that far off. Living in a city like Chicago and running mostly along the lakefront there are some seasonal cues that are as accurate as turning leaves. For me, living near both the Belmont and Diversey Harbors, the first sign of fall is the boats being taken out of the water. Little by little, one by one, the owners pack them up and take them somewhere to spend the winter safe.

People who only know Chicago from what they've seen in movies sometimes don't know what a great recreational area the lakefront is. There is a running/cycling path that goes for 18 miles ONE WAY. I live up on the north side [think Cubs] so the view I see is looking south to the city. I see the John Hancock building standing guard over my side of the city.

Seeing the lake, season after season, I've come to appreciate how alive it really is. It's got a personality that is as unique and as obvious as anyones. The lake can smile and be welcoming. It can be angry. It can invite you in and warn you to stay out. This time of year the lake is recovering from a summer of fun.

Yesterday I ran along the lakefront. Today I walked. I walked because there were things I needed to think about and walking helps me keep my thoughts in motion. Running is distracting, but in a different way. I get caught up in my running. I start listening to my breathing, feeling my heart beat, sensing my feet hitting the ground.

Walking allows me to put my body on autopilot. Even with no athletic talent I'm still pretty good and remembering to alternate feet!

Today's the kind of day when I'm grateful that I became active. Today's the kind of day that makes all the other days worth it.

Waddle on,

John

1 comment:

Amy said...

Enjoyed your article in the November Runners's World about why you run. It's a favorite topic of mine and love to talk about it on my blog every few weeks. Today, the comments by other runners about why they run struck a similar cord to your thoughts in this post.