I had the kind of run tonight that most of the time, eludes me; I think about it, I dream about it, I remember it, but sometimes I just can't get there.
In my head, I had a mental imprint of the words I've read about running this week;
loose, relaxed, limber; I also took a completely different route, one that I have never done on my own, a standard 8 km for many runners in my neighbourhood, but for me it was brand-new.
At one point, I was on a heavily-foliaged trail, the only others I saw were cyclists, and no joke, I had little explosions of panic inside when I thought, really thought, of how isolated I was.
But I persevered, reminding myself that at no time on the run did I not see a cyclist at least every few seconds, it was still early evening, and the sun was beaming down.
It was in this secluded area that I wanted to push through that I had that moment. It's not just 'runner's high'; it feels more euphoric than even that.
My runner's high is when my thoughts merge into one thought, and that thought is "How am I doing on this run, how is my body, what hurts, what part of me could keep going forever?" but this moment, this other euphoria is different. It starts as a wave from within, and pulses outward. I no longer think 'real' thoughts. I no longer worry, analyze, focus, or critique. I simply exist, with goosebumps, shivers, and that wave washes over me, my legs moving, my arms pumping, gasping for air, wanting water, and there truly is nothing else like it. Today I threw my head back as I ran, wanting the sensation to last as long as I could sustain the pace I was at, and I literally felt earth-less, like I didn't need gravity's blessing, I didn't need the burden of my own complicated thoughts.
Earth-bound again, and my outlook is improved immeasurably. I've looked around my apartment tonight, trying to choose a book, thinking post-running thoughts, the kind infused with those fabled endorphins, which, in the best of times, are as tangible to me as a calorie, but tonight was different.
I was different.
I am different.
And I always will be.