Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Heart Beats...

We had no rain for the first half of today. I took advantage and took my bike out for some exercise.

Since I expected rain to move in quickly, I opted for a short ride with some very steep hills to climb.

Climbing steep hills around here means getting on a fire road or a logging road, and climbing out of our valley to the top of some ridge covered in Douglas fir trees.

There are no cars and no voices and plenty of wild things on these roads, and the trees block out almost all sounds from the world.

When you are peddling, you hear the chain of the bicycle and the odd squeaks of the pedals and crank.

You hear your breathing become labored and air rushing in and out of your nose and mouth.

You can feel your heart beating in your chest, but your entire body is in motion so the sensation is masked by being overwhelmed.

It is when your heart feels like it is about to become untethered, and you get behind in your breathing and you think you'll never get enough air, and your legs are burning across your thighs and now feel like they don't belong to you, and you finally stop peddling and come to a manic stop on a steep hill on a fire road in the quiet of the trees...

In that quiet... in that wild and uncivilized place... you become super-attuned to the whole notion of life-- its very essence, really.

The heart pumping blood...

Air moving in, air being pushed out...

Just those two things.

The heart bouncing loudly in your chest.

"Go go heart!" you tell it.

Your big bags in your chest opening up and emptying.

"Sweet, sweet air..."

It's a kind of suffering- you are truly wiped out by the exercise...

But oh boy, you are so alive.


Shrinky said...

Let those endorphins flow! Yes, it's a painful exercise at the start, but the ending makes it all worthwhile, doesn't it?

I must start running again!

Cheesy said...

Take a lap for me ok?

kario said...

Love this! Nothing like getting your blood pumping out in nature. We are so lucky to live in such a gorgeous place.