a vegan couple: eating; running; living–minimally.

Category: Thoughts and feelings

Taking an Extra Moment in Nature


We rounded the bend and came to a sudden halt. The tractor inched down the intersecting trail, breaking the rhythm of our run and the calmness we had found. I grew impatient and frustrated as the tractor plodded and sputtered. I stopped my watch; the metaphorical foot tapping in my head in grew louder.

Katie and I had been out on an easy run at our local trail system on the Brewster River in Jeffersonville, VT. A rolling combination of single and double track, these trails were a refuge for us, a moment away from parenting and life’s concerns. But here life and technology and waiting were thrust at us. But then, just as suddenly, I realized what I was frustrated at. I had to stop, sure, but the tractor was hauling dirt and rocks to help improve the trails I was running on. More importantly, this momentary interruption was giving me a few extra quiet moments in the forest, a few more moments with the person adult I love most in this world (cause love for your kid is on a completely different plain).

Why the hell am I frustrated at this?

Too often we grumble and complain about a momentary interruption that is really a chance for quiet, for surprise, for engagement, for taking a breath. The next time you find yourself faced with an interruption take a breath and ask yourself “Why am I frustrated at this?” I’ll bet that

SURPRISE! I thought I didn’t want to run this again?!


So, one year ago I celebrated finishing the third leg (10 miles) of the Vermont City Marathon Relay, having run with a 3-person turned 2-person relay team (I ran the 10 mile leg). I enjoyed the race, my legs felt amazingly good, and I toasted never having to run the race again. Done and done.

Apparently my resolve only lasted a year. Same friend; another teammate shortage; same outcome—I’m running. This time I ran the 1/2 Marathon relay. So once again I find myself running a road race—not overly excited about running on the roads, but adequately trained and coming to realize that diversifying the type of running is probably best for your overall fitness.

Our combined-relay time was just under 3:30. Dharma ran a 1:41 and I ran a 1:45; not my best half marathon but certainly nowhere near my worst. It demonstrates to me that even with a small amount of training I can drop into a half marathon and do decently well. It also helped that I wore my “Strong Hearts Vegan Power” shirt—this always gets me lots of cheers and provides a real morale boast.


I’d say that I’m not going to run this ever again, but we know how far that got me last time.

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