Another Year, Another Loop Around the Trail of Life

7 Jun

(Photo credit: Martin Lieberman)

Yesterday, soon after I woke up, I laced up my sneakers, strapped on my armband, cranked up some good tunes, and dragged my largely out-of-shape body to the Chestnut Hill Reservoir, partly to “train” for this week’s Corporate Challenge (which I signed up for kind of as a goof, but now actually have to do), partly to work off some of the crap I’ve been eating lately, and partly because — well, did I really need a reason?

Not surprisingly, it wasn’t an easy go at first. I jogged some of the way there, then after a few stretches, started jogging around the 1.5-mile-long trail. Then I slowed to a power walk, and eventually just walked.

Three quarters of the way around my counter-clockwise loop, even though I had walked nearly all of it, I thought to myself, “That’s it. I’m done. Maybe I’ll just do one today. Maybe I’ll come back and do another one later today after I’ve rested. Maybe I’ll do better tomorrow.” I was trying to talk myself out of continuing.

But a funny thing happened as I neared the starting point on the Boston College side: I decided I could probably — and should definitely — do another. So I pushed myself to begin another loop around.

This time, things were different. Every now and then, whenever I found the strength, I started to run again. Sometimes it was because a good song started to play. Sometimes it was because a good section of a song motivated me. Sometimes it was to catch up to a good looking BC student or twentysomething who was also out on the trail. Sometimes it was just to pass some slower older folks. And sometimes it was for no reason other than because I felt like I could.

At the end of that loop, I knew I could do another. So I did.

All told, I spent about two hours running/walking almost five miles (if you include the distance to and from my home). I probably could have done more. And it felt really good. Go me!

Life Is a Series of Loops

(Photo credit: Theresa Thompson/Flickr)

(Photo credit: Theresa Thompson/Flickr)

At some point during that third loop, the less-than-subtle metaphor hit me (yes, sometimes it takes a while), and I realized it was no coincidence that this was happening a day before my birthday.

After all, isn’t life just a series of loops around the trail? There are twists and turns, bumpy parts and smooth ones, and nice views too. Some loops are better than others. Some require a little extra motivation. Some start slow but finish strong. Yadda yadda yadda. You get the point.

The last loop of my life was a good one. Starting off in California last year and through trips to Cleveland, Chicago, and Florida; during many Twitter chats, movie screenings, and meals; from one job to another; and so on, there was much to be happy about. Forty was a good year, one of my favorites. When I look back on all I did these past 365 days, I can smile and be proud.

And now — to really hammer this metaphor home — I’ve reached the end of one loop and am about to start another. That means it’s time to push myself to do even better in the next year. After all, there’s still plenty left to do on my 2015 to-do list. And that’s just for starters.

But I can do this. I should do this. I want to do this. I will do this.

Today, though, I’m going to celebrate my birthday. Apparently, I’m 41 years old. (No, I still don’t believe I’m that old.) And it’s going to be fun. Of course it is.

Tomorrow I get back on the trail and start another loop around.

If it mirrors yesterday’s workout, this loop is going to be even better than the last one was.

Happy birthday to me!

Want to join in the celebration? Leave a comment below, or tweet this blog post.

4 Responses to “Another Year, Another Loop Around the Trail of Life”

  1. ctrappe June 7, 2015 at 8:06 am #

    Good for you. Happy birthday.

    I hope life is more than going around the same loop, though. 🙂


  1. 10 Thoughts About Blogging After 10 Years of Being a Blogger | Martin's Musings - September 1, 2015

    […] months earlier, right when the germ of an idea was hatched (often in the shower, on a drive, or while on a long walk). Sometimes, you have to strike while the iron is hot so you don’t lose the momentum or the […]

  2. I’m 42, and I Have No Idea What That Really Means | Martin's Musings - June 7, 2016

    […] gotten good at over these past 42 years, it’s doing just that. And over the course of my last lap around the trail of life, there was lots of good time to enjoy. There were trips to Colorado, Chicago, Cleveland, Las […]

What say you? Leave a comment here.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: