It’s been one of those nights. I toss. I turn. I look at the clock. I do it all again. And then, finally, I sleep.
But not for long.
One eye, then both eyes are opened to check the time. I think the little, blurry, red numbers read 6:57 AM. I squint at them to be sure and now they read 6:58. I decide it’s time to close my eyes. When I open them again, the little red numbers read 7:02.
I sit up, feel the cold bedroom air and promptly lay back down. I pull the covers back over me and close my eyes. The red numbers are there when I look again. They are still blurry but this time they read 7:14 AM.
I don’t wanna get up. I don’t wanna brush my teeth. I don’t wanna get dressed. I don’t wanna go running. I just don’t wanna.
But, I’m going to anyway.
I heat up the coffee in the microwave, just like I do every morning, but today it tastes like yesterday’s sawdust. So does the slice of toast that goes with it. Blah… Blah, blah, blah, blah, BLAH! I take my vitamin and wash it down with the last swirl of coffee in the bottom of the cup. Yeah, this morning is just special.
I tie on my shoes, fill a water bottle, pick up the back pack with my dry clothes, and then sit back down. Blah! The clock on the microwave blinks its blinking tick-tock at me, telling me that it’s now 7:46 AM. It’s getting late. It’s time to put up or shut up. I grab my back pack again, then my coat and keys from the hall.
I’m talking to myself again. “It’s going to be cold. Why the heck am I doing this?” I really don’t like being cold. “Heck, there’s even frost on the outside door,” I mutter.
I don’t wanna go outside, but I’m going to.
Down the road, across the highway, left at the corner, and a right turn into the park. The usual suspects are all there, standing around, breathing steam, laughing and joking like it’s a morning in May. Me? The car has finally warmed up. I don’t wanna get out of the nice warm vehicle and deal with the cold again.
I don’t wanna, but I’m going to.
Blah… It’s cold and I’m grumpy and I don’t wanna be here. As a herd, the runners move as a single group to the roadway, I just want to stay behind and head back home.
“Come on legs, time to start moving and generate some heat, time to run,” I mutter unenthusiastically. The legs are sort of willing but the spirit is weak. “One, two, three… Let’s get this run on the road.”
I really don’t wanna, but I’m going to.
I finally warm up as we the run up Francis Road. As we make the rise past the overpass, I face the prospect of actually having to run to the top of the Escarpment, up that last bit of evil, nasty pavement. As I approach that last corner, where you can almost reach out and touch the ground in front of you, all I can think of is my nice warm bed and how tough this rise in the road is.
I don’t wanna run the last 100 metres, but I’m going to.
I make it to the top and reward myself with the view across the Hamilton Bay and a short recovery walk. It’s all gentle joking and story time with the boys as we head across the concession road, into Waterdown and finally down into the Snake Road valley. The short climb to the Four Corners as the sun comes out of the clouds is warming and welcome. From here it’s a quick down hill, over the bridge, through Hidden Valley Park and back to where we started from.
I’m a bit tired, a little chilled, but feeling better about the whole day ahead than I was a short while before. As we turn the final corner and see the end of our run a head of us, I think that I could just keep going, effortless and free.
I don’t wanna stop, but I’m going to.
By Mark G. Collis
January 9, 2010