I hadn’t run since before I went to Delawana for our vacation and since I got back any exercise I have done has been sporadic, at best. A few planks here and there, some ankle strengthening exercises…but other than that I fell off the bandwagon a bit.
But doing dryland last night was important to me. Dryland training is set up so the running portion gets longer throughout the summer until it reaches a peak which is exactly eight weeks before the first speed skating meet of the year and then the difficulty level starts to drop down until dryland training ends.
That peak day was yesterday. My birthday. I turned 43.
So even though I haven’t been doing anything in three weeks, I really wanted to do this, not to prove anything but because getting older is weird. My body is aging—I look in the mirror and see lines where there didn’t used to be lines, colouring my hair has become a necessity and not just something I do for fun, and gravity has taken hold of me—but in my head I’m still in my 20s. A 20-something-year-old with two kids and a mortgage, but 20-something nonetheless.
It is a complete dichotomy between the years I have lived and the years my brain thinks I have lived.
The last few years when we vacation at the Delawana, there is this one woman I always see. She looks to be in her late 60s. She dresses every night for dinner, one night wearing gold lamé dress and bold jewellry, she participates in the activities and she’s often swimming in the pool and at night when our family is typically in bed, she is dancing at the Boathouse Bar.
I think she is utterly and completely fantastic.
So last night I went and I did belt drills, ran sprints that made me want to throw up and finished off the night with our run. Running for ten minutes is easy. Running for ten minutes when your legs are shaky from doing one-legged squats and sprints…not so much. E. called it our mental workout. It was all based on pushing our bodies past the point where we think we can go on and having the mental fortification to keep going.
So I did it.
And when I’m in my 70s I’m going to dance at night, wear bold jewellry, participate in life and rock a gold lamé dress. Because this aging thing? It’s all mental too.