Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Iron People

Why is everyone running? Suddenly, it seems as if all of my friends are hitting the road. It started with marathons and has progressed to triathlons and other forms of sadomasochism.

They’re diving into waters where dead bodies are routinely found by the Philadelphia police and getting lost in the back woods ala “Deliverance.”

Is it about running away – from bills, kids and other responsibilities? Or is it about running to something – unfulfilled dreams and the such? Is it a coincidence that we are all just turning 40?

My friend Meg says it’s about personal satisfaction. I feel personally satisfied after 20 minutes on the treadmill once or twice a week. I celebrate with wine and ice cream.

Don’t get me wrong. I believe in fitness. I actually enjoy select portions of it. And I have to admit my friends are beginning to look like Mr. and Mrs. Buff Brick Shithouse. But is it sustainable? Is it worth the hours and the injuries?

What am I missing? Please tell me…

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

I think there is a meditative aspect to running - at least that is what appeals to me.

One foot in front of the other over and over again.

I'm not running away or towards anything. Just running.

And trying to keep my monkey brain quiet.

susan matthews said...

That makes sense. My brain is already silent, though. Just the crickets...(-:

Actually, I need to be angry to get up a good run and some good angry music to go along. I've actually run every day this week! But then 10 minutes later I'm done. Anger out.

Come on people, piss me off. I'll be a mean, lean person. No that's not very zen. I'll try the meditation thing.

kellie7 said...

Susan - this cracked me up!!!! I was loving the part how you described "swimming in the bodies of water with ..." CLASSIC !! I too am not much of the runner but that crew got me to do the Philly Marathon (4 mile leg) 2 years ago... but cheers to the runners out there!!!

Anonymous said...

I am not sure what these people are thinking. Maybe it is the new mid-life crisis. People are not getting red corvettes anymore, they are getting gold medals. Lets meet for lunch and discuss!

susan matthews said...

Do you like vodka? A long, lazy lunch it is! Wait...this is Angela, isn't it? Hah! Yoga rocks. This year, we can go four times instead of three (or was that two).

Anonymous said...

WAIT A SECOND...that wasn't me! I bet it was CE-LT4. If you two are having lunch, let's make it a three-some! Can't wait!

PS - I think men ARE buying Vettes for their mid-life crisis, just not little red ones...

susan matthews said...

So it's not you Angela and now we know it wasn't CE. Hmmm. A mystery....

runningmama2 said...

Running is fun!!! I say that in my head as I drag my ass up yet another hill! That and " my butt looks great!" Don't knock the medals, the first one is so cool, especially the NYC Marathon! As for triathlons..at some point the age will catch up with the body and we have to have something to fall back on. I love swimming...now. And yes lots of dead bodies but I bet they were happy doing what they love, even if they didn't get their medal! My girl likes to run too, how proud this momma is. Last but not least- it lets me eat the wine and chocolate...although I do have to go to bed early..6am run..Philly marathon is next!

susan matthews said...

Running mama...I admire the discipline it takes to run regularly. It's a discipline I would like to learn and apply to my writing. You got me thinking at the good butt part. I remember those days fondly, and wouldn't mind recapturing them. Having kids took the high out of my heiney. Now, it's looking rather "low-knee." You also mention chocolate and wine, so I know you're human. You've convinced me try running. I'm not up for the marathons - the nicer butt is more appealing to me than the medal (unless it's really big and I can wear it over my butt). I'll start small. Maybe a mile or so a day and then some fast paced walking. I'll get back to you on my progress. You may have a convert.

Anonymous said...

I agree there's a meditative aspect to running - just thinking about nothing and everything. I run for exercise...and to get away from my kids for 45 minutes. Just as most "new interests" I pick up - it too will probably not be long lived. Watching the Olympics however has definitely peaked a new interest in beach volleyball - well - maybe not - can the "uniforms" be any smaller?

susan matthews said...

Having to wear a uniform that small would absolutely get me to work out!

jeanne said...

ah, the "why." that is the question! Except for the misery part, it just so MUCH FUN! I'm one of the crazy ones who actually swam in the Schuylkill River last year, and then biked through the park, and then finished up with a 5k! it was awesome. I'll never be fast, i'll never be first. I also love the outdoors, and this is a way to be social and be outside...plus? I get to eat more. See ya back in class! :)