A striking parallel has just occurred to me. I was just thinking about all of my friends and how sometimes it’s ridiculously hard to coordinate our schedules to get everyone together. Then I remembered that sometimes it’s easy and everything lines up effortlessly. Then I thought about why that is, that random devotions and obligations should arise seemingly in waves and dissipate just as fast.
Then I ate a cookie.
I thought, “Hmmm. This feels like the slow part between fast parts.”
And I enjoyed it.
An evident metaphor sort of forms itself, providing a much easier (and more pleasant) way of wrapping your head around things, such as they are.
Every job has busy times. When I worked retail, it was Christmas season when every night found me gratefully flopping into bed with achy feet and the echoes of 12-year-olds wailing on $100 guitars in my ears. Now, it’s September to October, when everyone realizes that “Oh crap, it’s gon’ rain soon! Better get a tower crew out there before they can’t climb!” In DW’s job in politics, it gets downright insane near the end of a legislative session. Gas station attendants have rush hour. Financial advisors have the end of the fiscal year. Construction CEO’s have project deadlines.
Basically, everyone eventually experiences a period of time wherein things move fast, the temperature’s cranked up, the effort required is high and the time feels longer than the minutes that make it.
Then it passes, and the water stops churning for a while.
Sounds kinda familiar, don’it?
Tonight I’ve got a date with a cute blonde(DW) to do intervals tonight on the track of my old high school, the first speed session since we embarked on the path of slow and steady marathon training over 4 months ago. I plan to give it all I’ve got and see exactly what that is! Honestly I haven’t got a clue, it’s been so long. Gee I’m kinda giddy!
But I’m getting off point. My point is that the whole structure of interval training is intense running interspersed with periods of easier recovery pace, which makes it the perfect analogy to a job, or a hobby, or heck, even LIFE!
If you’re running the fast parts at high octane levels, you know the feeling nearing the end of the sprint. Head pounding, lungs burning, and well, the effort required is high and the time feels longer than the minutes that make it! But at the same time you love it because you know it’s making you stronger and faster and better and, after all, that next easy 800 is only about 30 seconds away, right? No?! A minute thirty? Ok, I can do that. Surely nooowww I’m there! Thirty seconds?! Is your watch broken?!
Annnnd… there. Ack! Ok (hack), a little rest, thank Pre and Bowerman, Haile and Abebe. Alright! Again!
It’s the feeling that although unpleasant, the hard parts make you stronger and prove for all that you’re pushing yourself and changing your ability to handle the load. The easy parts give you a chance to breathe and assimilate the changes.
So I’ve decided that the next time things heat up and I’m getting wound, Ima gonna relish the push and look forward to that next easy 800.
P.S. I actually wrote this yesterday, and the track turned out to be totally flooded. This wrought the learning of two lessons: 1) 8” wet grass is like quicksand for sprinting purposes, and 2) My wife has the ability to stomp in a puddle at exactly the correct trajectory to launch a dirt clod directly into my mouth from a ten foot distance.