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dreaming of roses

spring is slow in revealing its resplendence this year.  just of late, buds have attached themselves to winter bare limbs and the hummingbird feeder remains unattended, though the table has been set.

i will call today my first run of the season, though i have ventured out two other times since our world became more insular. first run because it was more joyful than i anticipated, requiring less discipline to get there and get home again.

17.05.20the sun played peak-a-boo in a cloud-dappled sky and even with a heavy frost in the early hours, the asphalt had loosened its grip on the winter chill and felt warm underfoot. birds were insistent in calling out their spring delight and the breeze, first against my left cheek as i headed out, then my right as i returned, was just right in its temerity.


signs of life, springing forth, among the detritus of winter and the pall of a novel corona virus.

it may be that when we no longer know what to do,
we have come to our real work
and when we no longer know which way to go,
we have begun our real journey.

~ wendell berry


tooooday 045

i have thought about urban poling off and on for years. i did some on-line research and thought about how fun it might be in a city setting and how accessible an activity it would be for the general public.

as i age, i look toward fun activities i can participate in safely. urban poling seemed to be another of those.

i wondered whether it would work for a barefooter, like me.

several months ago i was contacted by Barb Gormley of Fitness Business Canada Magazine regarding an article they were writing. i quickly recognized her name as connected with urban poling and took the op to ask a few questions. that brief conversation was all i needed.

so now, here i am, in the process of writing my exam for Level 1 Nordic Walking Certification. it is good stuff.

from Canadian Living on line:

because you’re using your upper and lower body, you’re targeting more muscles than you do when just walking – and getting a better cardio workout. studies show that Nordic walking burns 25 to 40 per cent more calories than regular walking, while helping to improve your posture, strengthen your core and tone your arms, legs and butt. It’s also a great rehabilitation tool, especially for anyone with knee or hip issues … because it helps relieve stress on the joints.

tooooday 026the sun was shining bright today. one of our first warmish and warming spring days. and, i finished work early. so there it was, my first opportunity to test drive my nordic walking poles. they are sleek, easy to adjust for height, light weight, and there is a short learning curve.

all the urban poling literature and videos make reference to the ‘heel to toe’ foot strike. as a barefooter, i no longer heel strike, not even when walking. i was jubilant to find i could still strike midfoot and use the poles efficiently.

tooooday 04080 minutes of walking, with a few stops to listen to woodpeckers, snap a photo, bask in the sun upon my face, offer gratitude for a haymarket martyrs and all since who have been courageous warriors for workers’ rights.

i have never met a wednesday with a hump in it.


march 29, 2013 run

march 29, 2013 run

i’ve been itching to spread my toes in an outdoor run. today, a rare day off, the sun was shining and enticing and my elbow was rubber.

i did not head out early. i needed the sunshine to take the sharp edge of chill off the asphalt and i hoped for the temperature to climb a couple of degrees.

at noon time, with a temperature of 0℃ and a pair of thermals covering my happy backside, i headed out.

the driveway was amazing underfoot. the cold, smooth mud of early spring, framed by squishy wet moss borders and dotted by ice-skimmed puddles, inspired me instantly.


there was a gusty nnw wind, on my right on the way out. a bit biting when the road was opened to not yet awakened farm fields. nipping the bits of my earlobe that pushed out of my cap. the asphalt, though, was warmed by the sun, dry and happy to be tickled by my toes. when the trees gathered along the shoulder, they cast patterns of chilly shadows to entertain me.

the run was short, sweet and satisfying. i was able to practice the chirunning form, focusing today mainly on my pesky shoulders which know not how to properly relax and allow my arms to be along just for the ride. adding the chirunning to the concepts of running with the mind of meditation made for a wonderful running experience.

so many blessings. such a good friday.

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