Sometimes while I'm out for a run I'll think back to what many call those,"carefree younger days." You know,the days when you had minimal committments and responsibilities,days when you could come and go as you please. For most, its an inevitable part of the aging process that we get married,perhaps have children and then assume such things as auto,credit card,rent and mortgage debt.For most,life also seems to become more complicated as we age. Those of us who live for the run are at some point in our lives presented with the challenge of balancing our running with these growing responibilities. How many of you have known guys you used to run with, people who seemed to be as into running as you are, just drop out of the running scene?This often occurred after a marriage,getting a full time job, or a house.I had friends who did and when I asked them what happened they would usually say rather sheepishly,"you know Dave,I'm older now,I got responsibilities." My response was always,"you mean you can't take 45 minutes a day or so during the week and maybe a little longer on weekends to do something you love?" They'd say, "yeah I know,I just don't know where the time goes...".
Here's some things I'd offer to those people who may be reaching that point in their lives where it seems all their time is spoken for.Lets start with your significant other; if your girlfriend/boyfriend doesn't understand your love for running and devotion to it and that it is often a trouble point in your relationship,then you may want to reassess whether or not this is the right person for you.Think this sounds extreme? Well, if someone does not respect your participation in something that is an integral part of who you are do you really believe that,that mindset will not carry over into other areas of your relationship? If you don't, then I say dream on. Another thing,ask yourself,am I a free person? Seems like an absurd question doesn't it? But,many of you are,or have become slaves to paying for a lifestyle you can't afford and often don't even need. Ever know people who are buried under heavy debt, be it for mortgages new car payments or for things I call adult toys? People, who because of their expenses and lifestyle never seem to have time for themselves,where every moment of their time seems to be "spoken for", even weekends?
In closing I say this, at the end of the day, what do most of us want? We want to enjoy life,we want good health and good relationships. None of that is possible when you are operating under a daily burden of debt and overcommittment. Anything more depressing than talking to a former hardcore training buddy who says he lives for the two or three weeks he gets each year to vacation somewhere and get away from it all? For us who live for the run, that ain't living,that's existing. For those of you who may be approaching a lifestyle that you sense will be leading you down the wrong path I say, simplify! More on this subject in the future.