I got a little choked up on the treadmill last night. I was thinking about when we bought it -- probably 8 years ago. It wasn't long after we'd finished building our house and settling in. The kids were little, 3 and 5, and I was feeling a bit stuck, a bit lonely, and a bit dreamless. I guess I thought the treadmill would take me somewhere, get me someplace. I used it off and on for a while but it took me nowhere, got me noplace. It went the way of most of its kind -- it sat in the basement and gathered dust.
Fast forward to spring of 2008. That marks the first time I ever ran on a road or in public. I ventured out into a neighborhood and dared myself to run to one mailbox, walk to the next, and repeat that the whole way around a block. I'm not sure what inspired the first steps but I can remember the excitement I felt. It seemed so daring and crazy! (And awkward and hard!)
Fast forward to last night and an easy 5.5 mile aerobic run back on the same treadmill in the same basement. It was low key enough that my mind was free to wander so I began to mentally rehearse the runs for my upcoming races - the 5K for the Aquathalon and the 10K in the Olympic Distance triathlon.
Then it hit me. I was training on my treadmill to race in London in stars and stripes. When we got this treadmill I could have NEVER imagined this scenario.
I no longer feel stuck, lonely, dreamless. Every day is an adventure, with much of it unscripted. I guess that treadmill did eventually take me somewhere.
I was not an athlete growing up. When we ran the mile in school, I was always one of the slowest. I didn't swim, bike, or run until my 40s. It's easy to imagine when you meet people, that they were always how they are at a given point in time...sort of static. But we are always changing, for better or for worse. The choice is ours.
We are capable of tremendous positive change and new directions at any time.
My new direction started with a dusty treadmill and a mailbox.
What started yours?