Some might call these types of runs pointless miles. Yesterday’s run left me feeling a little depleted and with Dylan napping and the cabin quiet on Sunday afternoon, I stepped out for what is becoming one of my favorite loops: 11.4 miles of some high altitude running between 6,000′ and 8,000′ feet. If we lived this close to the trail, I would probably find an excuse to run this loop just about every day when the route isn’t buried in snow. I enjoy running along the ridges and in the shadows of snowy peaks, hearing the wind howling through the pine trees and smelling the pine needles and warm dust. There is everything to enjoy about those 90 minutes. But at an 8 minute per mile pace and no goal other than just to enjoy the run, these are often referred to as garbage miles: a run with no specific training purpose. These can be my favorite runs.
Today is Father’s Day. And don’t kid yourself, without the mothers, we would have no Father’s Day. Nicole does the day-to-day heavy lifting with Dylan for which I am enormously grateful. Yet, seriously, how do you describe the joys of fatherhood? It’s probably like trying to describe the taste of peaches (assuming you like peaches as much as I do) to someone who has never tasted them. You just can’t do it. I can’t tell you about it. I can’t even really show you. In the end, you just have to experience it, taste it for yourself and then you realize, “Oh, this is what they meant!”
On vacation, a young couple came up to us one day during lunch on the ship and asked how it was traveling with Dylan. They loved to travel but are afraid kids would mean the end of their traveling lifestyle. Nicole and I looked at each other, knowingly agreeing that Dylan is one of the best things that has happened to us, and said, “You just do it. It’s different than before but even better.” Being a dad doesn’t limit your experiences, it only adds to them.