It’s All Downhill From Here

Though the phrase “it’s all downhill from here” is often associated with things turning bad–think every birthday after turning 50, or when you realize you’ve reached your athletic/professional/sexual peak and from now on things will only get worse–for those of us who torture ourselves by running, riding, or hiking uphill on purpose, the phrase is music to our ears.

Tim and I woke up fairly early on Saturday morning to go for a nice, 4ish mile trail run. Since the apartment we recently moved to is super close to Wachusett, our plan is to run there pretty frequently. Tim had gone a few times without me over the last couple of weeks to scope out routes, so I trusted him to lead the way. (Also, I had no choice but to let him lead the way, as he refuses to let me set the pace ever.) After about a mile of running  stumbling uphill trying to keep up, there was a brief reprieve before going up again. Straight up. Seriously. It was awful. (Side note: I was confident I’d be able to handle this run since I’ve been running on my lunch breaks pretty regularly. Unfortunately, said lunch runs have been pretty flat, and my lungs and heart were not prepared to run up a “mountain.”) I was allowed a short break at the summit, which I used to take this photo:

Never trust a man in tights.

After exercising my superb iPhone photography skills, Tim uttered those beautiful words and we took off toward the car. Aside from being a little scary at first (he picked the steepest trail to run down and I was sure I was going to break my face and/or die), the downhill portion of our run was incredibly nice. But! Just as I was starting to like trail running again and had finally achieved some semblance of normal breathing, Tim led me back uphill, at which point I reverted to hating everything about everything.

Tim has a funny theory about how our relationship involves a sort of weird domestic abuse that consists of shit like this rather than yelling or hitting. Sometimes, I think I’d prefer the normal kind. (Ok, not really. Please excuse my facetiousness. It’s late.)

After gaining half of our initial elevation all over again, we started our for-reals descent. I used this time to bitch about how much I hate running and how much I hate Tim for being so much better at running up mountains than I am.

I also used this time to think about how grateful (for lack of a better word) I was for this “miserable” experience because it was exactly what I needed to get me out of my sad, sad writing rut.

Then I destroyed him in a sprint for the gate at the end of the trail and all was right in the world again.

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