Monday, June 13, 2016

The Hidden Benefits

Mondays, right?

Nothing more to be said, usually. We all roll out of bed with our Game of Thrones hangovers thinking "Why, old and new gods and lord of light and mother of dragons, why?"

More realistically, we THINK those questions, but due to the quicksand filled fishbowl that is our brain at the start of the week, it mostly comes out as "Hodor, Hodor Hodor Hodor, Hodor?" For me, this condition can last the entire day. By "day," I usually mean it's Wednesday and suddenly I'm somewhat aware of my surroundings.

I don't think I was conscious of just how sluggish my days had been feeling until, well, they weren't. Last week, I took up a small but harder-than-it-sounds-for-someone-like-me challenge: run 6 days in a row. Not run far or hard, just get outside in the morning and put in at least a mile from Saturday to Thursday.

The "getting out of bed" being the biggest challenge, of course

Waking up was shockingly easier than it had been over the last few months (during which the snooze button had become that ultimate bad-for-you best friend). Running was a tad harder, but the weather was kind and I easily got through the week, building a little more distance each day. I deliberately decided not to time myself or use MapMyRun. This week wasn't about speed or time improvement: it was purely to wake my body up after a long period of once-a-week walk/jogging.

Shockingly, it REALLY worked! It was about 2PM on Monday when it dawned on me that I had been awake all day. Not "awake" as in "not falling asleep under the soothing buzz of an office fluorescent light," but physically and mentally alert in a way that I hadn't realized that I'd been missing. When you work in an office environment, it's dangerously easy to let the immobility of the job make it feel okay to, well, feel immobile. I'd been walking to the water fountain rubbing my eyes as if it was normal, but this week, I learned it really didn't have to be.

I can't promise this elevated feeling will last forever, but for now, it's a great encouragement to tell me that I'm doing something right. When you don't lose weight easily or automatically graduate to adding another mile onto your run with confidence, it's hard to feel motivated to put so much effort into health. For me, this is a nice reminder that there are positive results not measured on a scale.

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