I've been in Lansing for --gasp! -- 25 years now and have to admit that sometimes I feel like I'm here against my will (OK, specifically between January and March of every year). Today wasn't one of those days. It was sunny. It was 60 degrees. And the company and scenery made it worth waking up early on a Saturday for a run.
We were a small, yet mighty group of four today. My partner Angela wanted to save some energy (and prevent injury!) by taking it slow since she's starting our relay team off at 7:30 tomorrow morning. The other two ran ahead.
We set off at a brisk pace, passed the state Capitol and took the stairs down to the trail that runs next to the river. The view is so beautiful that you forget you're in the city. Purple, yellow, pink and blue flowers greeted us practically each step of the way. Ducks slept on the river banks. Other cyclists and runners said good morning as they went past.
The air even helped with the illusion of being elsewhere, smelling of wet grass and soil.
We meandered up to Old Town, past the fish ladder. All the while, we marveled at our good fortune to be healthy enough to do this in such a beautiful area.
I half expected the critters around us to start dancing as we broke into song a la old Disney cartoons.
And then we looked up at a building and saw the gargoyles. Can't say they were beautiful. They really didn't seem to fit the day's bright and airy feel.What they did, though, was remind me that I don't have to push myself so much during every run. I can take the time to really look around me. To enjoy my surroundings. I can turn off the Pandora, take out my ear buds and really spend time in the moment.
And to really look for those things that are so easy to miss when I'm just rushing through my day. Whether that's my favorite 7-year-old's latest Lego creation, the way the river sounds when it's rushing down the fish ladder or the way those gargoyles sat perched on the building, being more watchful that this runner.
Here's to more of those runs that remind us to slow down once in a while.