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Independence, MO – I woke up on a recent Saturday expecting to run through the shadow of a former president. Instead, an unexpected storm blew into town.
Let me explain.
Kate and I mapped out our morning run Friday night. The first soccer game wasn’t until 2 p.m. Saturday – late for us – so we decided to re-run May’s L.I.N.K. Run route, which starts and ends at the Truman Presidential Library and Museum in Independence.
In the end, our outdoor run never happened. It hailed instead.
As I looked out the front door that Saturday and begrudgingly announced the piling pellets, Kate smartly suggested we change our venue to the Independence Family YMCA, where we’ve been members for a decade. I heaved a sigh of frustration: It’s not that I don’t like the Y; I just love running outdoors.
Upon hearing her suggestion – I admit now it was a great one – all three kids perked up.
“Yeah, dad,” said Maggie. “That would be cool.”
Aaarrrggghhh, I growled to myself. There goes another road run.
Just then, as though he could hear my reluctant thoughts, 8-year-old Tom chimed in. “You don’t always have to run outside, dad,” he said. “If we go to the Y, all of us can have fun.”
That last sentence sealed it. I resolved to smile and happily head to the Y with the clan, even though I was still groaning at the thought of a weekend day on the treadmill.
Our time at the Y couldn’t have been further from what I expected.
The three-mile run my marathon training plan called for was enjoyable on the rubber ribbon: I watched MSNBC headlines while listening to a recent podcast of “The Marathon Show” with Joe Taricani (http://www.themarathonshow.com/). Afterward, I headed into the weight room, something I’d long wanted to do – my training plan calls for one day a week of strength work – but hadn’t made time for because of my passion for the pavement.
Not only did the weight work introduce me to an important new chapter of my fitness journey, it pushed and pulled me in new and – er, painful – ways. I was walking proof of that in the days that followed.
As we left the Y, I told Kate and the kids how rewarding the morning had been. They relayed the fun they’d had on the treadmill, lifting weights, kicking the soccer ball and shooting baskets. And I poked fun at myself for stressing out over a missed road run.
The fact is, I got a better workout at the Y than I would have from a simple 3-mile loop through the neighborhood. And what’s more, we had a great time as a family.