Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Great Big Loop--Pondering How to Live Life

It is now Tuesday.  I am taking a second day off.  I had not originally intended to take three of seven days off between Wednesday of last week and Tuesday of this week.  (I am using the Wednesday-Tuesday week as well as the Sunday-Saturday week because the year started on a Wednesday.)  In any case, I am catching up on writing about my last run, which was Sunday.  After this I hope to keep up with an entry, even if short, on each day I run.

In any case, on Sunday I went out at 5:21 for an 11 mile run.  Why so early?  Well, it was another run alone.  And it meant that I was home in time to make sure that my 14 year old was ready to go out the door to his early ice skating lesson.

The run was one great big loop of 11 miles.  It was a course I had not run before.  I started out going down my street, to Cedarcroft, over to Northwood, down to Lake, across to Chinquapin, down to Northern, across to The Alameda, down to Belvedere, across to Good Samaritan Hospital at Loch Raven, north on Loch Raven, to the street just past the post office, around the Mars store, back onto Loch Raven, left on Loch Hill, left on Regester, over to York, up to Burke, across to Towsontown, then to Osler, up the hill to Stevenson, across to Charles, then to Northern again, back to Bellona, up to Lake, back to York, south to Nicholl, north on Ready, down Cedarcroft, over Clearspring, up Hollen, across Yorkshire, and down past our house with just a little extra looping back at the end to get the full 11.00.  Started out with three of the first four miles over 8:00 (including the run up Regester) but then not a single mile above 8 in the last 7.  Some pretty serious negative splits.  It felt great.

On my virtual pilgrimage, I would have run straight through Zanesville.  I woudl have passed right by St. Nicholas Catholic church and there is also a St Thomas Aquinas in Zanesville.  I find philosopher's interesting.  In any case, I have reach 351.5 miles (averaging 39 miles for each of the first 9 weeks).  That leaves me at US 22 and Old Town Rd in White Cottage, Ohio..

It was 29 degrees when I started.  I was so happy that I even posted a picture of the temperatures: actual 34 while feeling like 29.  

Earlier in the week, I had posted a quote: 
In the end there are only three things that matter: how much you loved, how gently you lived, and how gracefully you let go of things not meant for you.  
It struck a chord with at least one friend.  There were twelve who indicated that they liked the quote.  But one in particular commented simply "Oh wow!"  Another runner.  Has seen the end of marriage in the past year.  

We exchanged a brief email.  

I commented on how much this much have particularly applied to my friend.  My friend commented back that it really applies to us all to one degree or another.

That caught my attention.  How gracefully did I leave my position at the School of Public Health?  It was meant for me for almost 17 years.  But then it wasn't.  How gracefully did I leave the worship band at my church?  It wa meant for me for most of 7 years, but then it wasn't.  How gracefully did I leave running in the 1980's?  Could I leave it gracefully again?  What else may some day "not be meant for me."  And perhaps even more importantly--how do I protect what is still meant for me.  That may be a good fourth thing to add to the list--"how willingly I gave everything I had for those whom I loved."  

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