Imagine sprinting across the finish line after a grueling 5K or 10K foot race. Your heart is racing, you aren’t sure you can really make it, but you are in close enough to taste it. You can hardly catch your breath, but you have never felt better as push yourself across that end line.
Sprinting the finish has always been my favorite part of any race I have ever run. I see that I am so close to making it to that line, and I cannot wait to get there. I imagine the rush is the same for auto races, mountain climbing or any other activity that is done to the finish line.
Feeling the sense of accomplishment, the sense of physical triumph, and the completion of something is really a wonderful feeling. You cannot think about what comes next because you are too focused on the moment and the finish.
Unfortunately, we cannot always sprint our way through everything. As a former runner, I know how important it is to know when to sprint and when to pace yourself. I was never that great at doing it as a runner. I am not that great at it in real life either.
I would sprint all the time if I didn’t have more sense. Fortunately, I do have some sense some of the time.
It was by accident that the stairs at HEP became my measure of how my legs were doing months ago. Now it is a very deliberate measure of my mobility.
Not only did I walk to and from a couple of areas today at HEP, but I also decided I would try to take the stairs. And I did choose to go down the stairs after Duke got his treats upstairs.
To me, the stairs have replaced the foot race. I can’t be in a hurry because each step has to be deliberately coordinated with the cane, each foot and leg, and the railing.
The feeling I have after rocking the stairs reminds me of how I felt crossing the finish line in a full sprint. I want to hold the cane in the air, wave it and shout something loudly while pumping my fist. I don’t do that or at least I haven’t yet.
Maybe it was too soon after surgery to climb stairs using so much effort, but I really needed a win since the burning torso was pretty constant. It is my reminder to myself that no matter what, I’ve got this.