Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Rememberence of a back to school run

It's funny but even after decades away from the classroom I still feel that back-to-school anxiety on the first Tuesday after Labor Day. Some of it surely comes from my kid's return to school and amping up the tension this year is my daughter's move into middle school. Both she and my son have handled things with aplomb and I'm hoping they have great first days back.

As I ran yesterday morning I was reminded of the transition to fall and all that goes with it. I thought of a run that I did in Cambridge on Labor Day before the start of my senior year in college. It was cold for September and I vividly remembered the smell of the air and the light of the sky that seemed so different from just a week before. I wasn't a runner then but I was in good enough shape to keep up with my friend who was fairly dedicated to the sport. I recall thinking how beautiful it was to run along Memorial Drive and how great it was to run simply for the sake of running. I'm sure I had every intention of continuing that experience and I recall that we did a few more runs together over time but it didn't stick with me. Perhaps it's for the best or I might now be one of those guys who says "I used to run but I can't anymore because of my knees [hip, foot problems]..." Maybe it was smart to start at a time when shoe design has evolved sufficiently enough to protect runners from such afflictions.

I restarted my running last fall and I was fortunate to ease into it at a time when the weather supported the experience so well. I'm looking forward to a few months of cool temperatures and low humidity before the mercury drops to the point that I will (shudder) need to get back on the treadmill for my weekday runs. I can't wait to step outside tomorrow morning and feel the chill, knowing that the worst of the hot summer is likely behind us. I'm hoping that early morning in Eisenhower Park during next Sunday's run will evoke the same feeling that I had in Cambridge so long ago.

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