This morning I woke up at around 5:15 am. This was because my upstairs neighbors were noisy, but mostly it's because of stress. We Hedengrens get insomnia from the other direction. None of this stress is that big--it's not like "how am I going to feed my babies?" stress or anything, but there's a lot and of different kinds.
Some of my stress is "good stuff happening" stress: visiting my brother, getting a visit from a friend, throwing an awesome Halloween party, getting invited to many good activities, planning a huge trip to Morocco.
Some of my stress is stress I've brought on myself, chickens coming home to roost, and are also pretty good: my novel's finishing up, I got a revise and resubmit on an article and an "accept with revisions" on a short story (I know, right?), and I'm applying to academic jobs as a "practice run." On top of this, I have all of these goals I set for myself, the number of hours of service I'd like to provide this semester, the the effort I'd like to make to be more friendly, even my desire to be more low-key and focus on those around me.
And, granted, some of my stress is bad: I'm helping friends through some rough times, my hard drive needs to be replaced, I haven't worked on my dissertation in weeks, and I've gained 4 lbs.
So it's nice to get up a go for a run, especially when I'm stressed. But because of good-stress visits, I didn't want to wake up my friend in the living room, so I couldn't find my phone (turns out I left it in my car), so I just took my house key and ran.
I just ran.
This was the first run where I haven't been doing anything but running since...maybe a year? I wasn't running a shelter dog who becomes more obedient with exercise. I wasn't earning money by betting against other people not going running. I wasn't saving the fictional town of Abel from zombies. I wasn't even tracking my time and speed. I was just running.
It was perfect weather. Cool, but by no means cold, fresh, you know? The sky was just brightening, that bright, light purple blue, when I started, and goldened into a sunrise as I rounded the loop (which I know, from those previous runs, is around 3.78 miles. Give or take.) There weren't too many cars on the road, but there were two dog walkers and a woman smoking a cigarette at the bus stop. I told them, "Good morning," kind of because of my goal to be more friendly, but also because I was feeling good morning. It was a good run. My legs never got sore and I would kick my pace up a few times so I could feel it a little more in my lungs, but I never had to gasp and I never got cramps. I just felt great.
I kind of wish I had my phone to take a picture of this morning, but that would have ruined it. Even blogging about this kind of ruins it. It was just a run. It was good.