Oh man, I hate winter. I hate the cold, I hate ice, and mostly I hate my treadmill. First of all, why is it so much harder? I know the outdoors and all its diversions is obviously preferable to the singular view of my Rocky movie poster on the wall, but why is it SO much harder to motivate myself on the thing? When I'm outside, the run takes about 5 minutes before I feel like I'm in my groove and loving my run. On the machine I feel like I'm counting down the entire time! I try all kinds of distracting methods to pass the time. I've tried watching only action movies while I run, I've tried only kids shows (not my best idea), Care Bears the movie did not help in the slightest to take my mind off the clock. Not even Punky Brewster took my eyes off the clock for more than a few minutes and I love that girl and her crazy shenanigans. I've tried music, I've tried captions to read, etc. etc., yet it still feels like a chore from start to finish!
This winter I've been running trails on sunny, dry days, and the dreadmill on the gloomy wet days. Let me tell you the difference is astounding. Thursday I had to treadmill it. I literally had to pep talk my way onto the thing. I let my kids watch "The perils of Punky" from season 2 because I thought that would help me get through my 6 mile trek. Nope. 2 miles in (which is where I'd be almost giddy outside) I had to slow my pace. 4 miles in I thought I'd never make it, and at 5 miles (I swear that machine lies) I finally called it quits with nothing but guilt and the Punky theme song on my mind. Where was my natural endorphin high? My sense of accomplishment? Clearly I have issues with the machine.
Today I went for a typical 6 mile jaunt with my dad out in what we lovingly refer to as the gulley. I ran the mile from my house to the trail head on the road, and met up with pops for the rest. I don't love the road like I love the trails, but it's not hard to stay there. I don't constantly check my watch to see how long I've been out or how far I've gone, I just keep going til I get there, smiling even. Once pops is with me it becomes downright delightful. Sometimes we talk politics, sometimes family drama, and sometimes our inner nerd comes out and we talk the entire hour about the Lewis and Clark expedition. I always feel so uplifted and energized. This week he told me he'd been timing the onset of darkness and it's been getting darker later and later by almost 2 minutes per night. DO YOU REALIZE WHAT THIS MEANS?!? It means spring is on its way and I'll have that much more daylight and I won't have to resort to the dreadmill much longer at all. Maybe that's what I'll think about next time I'm on the blasted thing. A few more weeks......a few more weeks........cue Punky Theme Song.