I Run in the Direction of…


by Suzanne Reisler Litwin

I’m a runner.  I have been running since I was 20 years old.  I ran when very short shorts were loose and an Adidas headband was all I needed to control the sweat. I started running because it was a great way to stay in shape.  It was and still is therapeutic. It also gives me an opportunity to listen to the kind of music I like. If you have read my articles before, you know I am a HUGE Elvis fan. My family can’t tolerate listening to his music so, Elvis is my “alone time” music.

Back in the day, I would run to clear my mind, listen to some great tunes on my Sony Walkman, and get fit.  I would run in beautiful surroundings for inspiration. I would run because I could. I was so carefree and the world was wonderful and I ran for pure joy.

Flash forward 33 years.

I’m still a runner, but with aching knees that click all the time. My loose running shorts are now ¾ length Epic Run Tight Fit Tights – to hold me together! I need a hat to control the incredible amounts of sweat pouring from this exercising menopausal suffering soaked me. It’s not as pretty, but it still has a PURPOSE!

My purpose is to run for ICE CREAM !!!!!

I know… I know… I know what you are thinking.  I suck at this now.  I can’t explain why this is happening, but it is.  No matter which direction I seem to run in, I end up running in the direction of ice cream.  It doesn’t always happen right after the run.  Sometimes I will run and then I say to myself, “I ran today, so I can have ice cream. Right?”

Other times, I run straight to Dairy Queen!  I get the tiny kid size cone.  It’s like a two-bite brownie. My problem is…I just can’t seem to run for any other purpose.

Running is still relaxing, therapeutic, calming, music loving, and always in a beautiful environment. It’s still goal oriented too.  I do want to stay in good shape and I want to eat ice cream.

Ya know… you can’t expect to be good at all the things you were once really good at.  I was a really good runner and I would run just to run.  Now I need a reward for running.  I need a prize at the end of the route.  I don’t need a marathon medal; I just need an ice cream! A simple pleasure, that’s all.

The best I can do now is accept my short comings. I can accept that I’m not doing the best at something that I once did really well. I can be better. I can stop running in the direction of ice cream.  I should have more self-control. I don’t want to though.  Every day counts, as you never know when it’s your last.

I think I am going to make a bargain with myself.

Every second run will be in the direction of ice cream.  That should cut down my sweet tooth intake by half.  That’s fair.

Maybe on those alternative days, I will run in the direction of chocolate instead?

Someone please hide my running shoes!

Suzanne Reisler Litwin is an instructor at Concordia University in The Centre for Continuing Education – Communications Department. She is a writing instructor at The Cummings Centre. She writes a weekly column in The Suburban Newspaper and at the West Island Blog. Suzanne is a freelance contributor to The Suburban Newspaper, West island Blog, Wise Women Canada, The Metropolitain, and Women on the Fence. She is the author of the children’s book, The Black Velvet Jacket. Visit suzannereislerlitwin.com to read more of her published articles, books, and poetry.



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