I don't know what happened to me. I've always been a lazy runner - looking for the flattest, coolest running route possible is the way I've always contended with my need to burn calories and get high on endorphins. I've never been one for heat. I've never enjoyed the sweaty, stickiness of it before, but something has changed recently....I'm actually craving hills and feeling some sick pleasure when running in the blazing sun. Weird, huh?
I think it began during my time in the desert last month. The challenge of convincing my body to run up the hill in 85 degree heat was appealing to me somehow. I was able to get right into the exact moment when each of my feet, steadily and slowly, hit the ground in their own constant rhythm. I was so tuned into the immediacy of the exertion that I didn't even project into the future reward of running down the hill, down with a pell-mell joy not often witnessed in those beyond the age of 11 or so. Bliss.
These recent runs, a little later in the evening than my usual exercise time, have been gloriously challenging. The sensation of the wind blown threat of rain has been idyllic - perfect running weather to make a girl truly glisten. My muscles have felt fluid and my breathing has become more shallow as I improve my aerobic capacity. I've been like a needle pulling thread as I've explored my neighborhood in an ever expanding circuit, admiring gardens, inhaling more flowers than fuel, stitching together the fabric of my community with each stride. Very cool for a hot day. Try it.