In a restless fit of fidgeting yesterday afternoon I told Jaymon that wanted to run. He wasn't feeling it and thought we needed another days rest. In hindsight and as I was chugging up the big hill in the cemetery I agreed but while sitting in the house wanting to burn off some energy I thought he was full of dookey.
What I heard was "no, lets wait until tomorrow". I thought ok, more often than not he is more reasonable and less impulsive than I and he balances me out and has saved me from myself countless times, so I decided to eat and let the idea of running go.
I don't like to eat before running unless its a banana or a bowl of apple sauce and chia seeds. I ate chicken and potato salad. Then the oldest spawn walks in and Jaymon says, "lets go run". Crap. Immediately I was conflicted. I had already let go of my restlessness to run and was sitting with a full belly, however when you are a parent to four boy spawn and the opportunity to run presents itself, you had better jump on that opportunity.
Off we went to the cemetery to blast up the big hill. I just wanted to run a quick three miles or so but again, the opportunity presented itself so I was going to make the best of it. About 4 times up the big hill and I was feeling cantankerous to say the least. I was starting to pick fights with Jaymon and feeling anxious about my chest and how much discomfort I was in. I know I have a healing ulcer but it was flaring up and with every sip of nuun I burped like crazy. The real kicker is that the inner conflict raged. On one hand I felt like crap and had a bad attitude and was not embracing the discomfort and moving past it. On the other hand I was right where I wanted to be. Outside on a warm summer evening with the love of my life listening to cicadas sing and fireflies starting to dance around and I knew it so I was pissed at myself for not appreciating it. Irony at its barefoot best.
We often talk of Sysyphus as we run up and down the hill. Did Sysyphus always hate his task or was he sometimes transported on his endorphin ship to his happy place. Did the "runners high" kick in and the act of rolling that boulder in the warm evening air and sounds of summer serenading him bring a smile to his face. He is charged with a task and there is no getting out. Did the idea of the sweet reprieve on the down hill with a few choice cuss words thrown in for flavor gave him the will to keep going and find pleasure amidst the pain?
Sisyphus believed that his cleverness surpassed that of Zeus and was punished with the task of rolling a boulder up a hill only to have the boulder roll back down before the summit. He was forced to go back down and do it all again, and again and again. We roll our boulders of obesity, heart attack, aging, stress, up the hill in the cemetery. Perspective and a test of the mind lead me on. Legs will burn and lungs will tire. Runners high will eventually kick in. It kicked in for me last night after finally burping and farting out the discomfort and the endorphins dulled the aches and pains to a pleasurable level. Some runs are a matter of sticking out the bad attitude and discomfort while having faith that the negative will be balanced with positive both in the short and long term. For me the workout of my mind was as intense and satisfying as that of my body. We ran one more time up the hill than the last run making for 13 and 2 more miles. I was tired but I found strength inside and I am looking forward to the next run.
Did Sisyphus discover joy amidst his pain and in this way his cleverness did surpass that of Zeus?