Saturday, December 14, 2013

Thrilled to Report

This morning, I took at 40-minute hike in the frozen, one-inch snow with our lovely dog, Sallie.  While this might not seem like much (and indeed, compared to what I used to do, it's not), the hike was a victory, considering the condition of my knees of late.  Brilliant person that I am, though, before I embarked into the wilderness, I pulled on my old knee brace and found my walking stick, a gift I received from my sister-in-law about eight years ago.  It is one of the best gifts ever, as it has saved me from many a fall and provides a workout for the arms.  Propelling oneself with a walking stick up the hill uses numerous muscles.  I switch on and off with my arms to ensure I don't get buff on one side, though admittedly, since I'm left handed and it's my left knee that needs more support, I'm bound to be a bit lopsided.  That's okay--suits my personality.

Let's talk dopamine.  There's nothing like the rush aerobic exercise can provide.  The surge cannot be adequately (or safely) reproduced by a pill.  Combine that thrill with a mild winter air, the brightness of the snow, the silence of the woods, the romping of the dog and you get a legal high, somewhat interrupted when the pup rolls on a dead snake.  Fortunately, the freeze prevented any nasty smell or cruddy fur necessitating a bath.  (Yesterday, she rolled in something as we were walking on a small hill.  I got a good laugh as she slid down on her side like a sled.  I'm not as strict with her rolling in the snow as I am typically.  She enjoys it, and I enjoy watching her enjoy.)

Snow and sleet were predicted for later today, but so far, nothing has fallen from the sky, which is rather disappointing.  I'm originally from northern Massachusetts.  Snow reminds me of happiness--days off from school, building snowmen and forts, Christmas, sledding...  We don't get  much snow here in Virginia, so when we do, I like to take advantage of it.  Perhaps later today we'll get a winter treat. In the meantime, there are the post-hike comforts of muscles having been used, a warm fire and a blog.
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