Saturday, October 23, 2010

October 23: Wind Power

After several months of taking a break from running to allow a strained back muscle to heal, I'm slowly trying to get my groove back. Slowly is the operative word, as I'm only running about a mile each time at this point, and not every day. While my back was recovering, my lack of significant aerobic activity combined with hard-hitting seasonal allergies has taken a toll on my lung capacity. Now I'm red-faced and wheezing as I jog a pitifully short distance. But, at least I'm back out there again, and I've optimistically set a goal of being able to run a 5K again by next spring.

This morning the bright sky, still-glowing trees, and lusty gusts of wind tossing up leaves encouraged me to put on my running shoes and just do it. I headed up the street, ducking my head as I ran right into the face of those energetic gusts. Fortunately, a peppy song was playing on my iPod and my legs felt strong, so I powered on into the face of the wind.

And then something cool happened. With my lungs burning from the exertion, I made my slow way up a hill, breathing through my mouth. The wind was blowing hard, and I realized that whenever I took a breath, I was inhaling the wind. It was blowing right into my mouth all the way to my lungs. It was like the wind was resuscitating me. So I opened wide and took in as much fresh air as the wind could give me. With the wind itself inside me, how could I not complete this short run successfully? I visualized the wind swirling in my lungs, in my blood, filling my body with vital energy. I think it worked.

Inspiring fall wind
gets me out the door running,
fills my mouth with air.

Note 1: The word "inspire" comes from Latin words meaning "to breathe in."
Note 2: The peppy song on my iPod, which I recommend for any workout/running mix, was "Silence" (Airscape Mix) by Delerium, featuring Sarah McLachlan. It's 8:37 minutes long, so when I'm back on my game, I should be able to run a mile while I listen to it.

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