Reasons I Exercise


Alanis Morissette has a song called “Reasons I Drink”. I’m not a person who drinks to cope. It’s not the only reason I exercise, but exercise sure can help me cope.

Here’s a short list of Reasons I Exercise:

The headline Monday morning “Thousands protest vaccine mandates in Calgary, as hospitals struggle with rising COVID cases” with a photo of someone holding up a picture of Anne Frank (!) that has the words “The law is not a moral compass. The people who hid Anne Frank were breaking the law. The people who killed her were following it.”

If I have to explain to anyone why this is a horrendous and inaccurate comparison, I need to go for a run. I may just keep running to a new planet where we can start fresh?

An animated woman in green t-shirt, black shorts, black cap and grey shoes, running mid-stride.

I was in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Ontario on the weekend. It was a lovely, relaxing weekend. I was happy to see that most people were observing the mask requirements. I was also happy to see a little “vegan, keto bakery” on a little side street, of an otherwise unappealing selection of snack options. I am not vegan or keto, but appreciate this type of food amongst a sea of fudge, ice cream and chocolate. That was until I walked in and noticed most of the people working there were not wearing masks. This is a clear choice these days. And the person who seemed to be in charge of the kitchen kept playing with her abundant blond hair in between plating food. That’s a bad choice, while preparing food, any time. That was enough for me to leave without ordering.

I’ve seen this in other ways, enough to recognize a weird conflation between people catering to wellness lifestyles and an alarmingly large number of those same people who are opposed to vaccines and mask wearing. In case, some weren’t aware, you can appreciate the benefits of regular movement, healthful food, etc., AND, also understand why vaccines are a good choice. This makes getting close to 30,000 steps that day necessary.

A brick wall with large white letters saying BANG HEAD HERE and a white circle and arrow, in case one doesn’t know where to bang head. This was my option, if I didn’t get more walking in, instead.

The idea that we may have a Conservative government, federally, by the end of the month. At the same time that we still have Conservative governments in Ontario and Alberta. That makes me crave a 60 minute endurance spin. Maybe if spin long enough, I’ll spin away this possibility.

Increasing waves and lengths of PMS these days. While some days, this makes me want to couch surf or hide in a bubble bath, it also makes me appreciate my long runs and the lingering endorphins. There are not enough endorphins in the world these days, but they help.

Picture of a white tub filled with (hopefully hot) bubble bath water and legs immersed in that water, resting the side of the tub.

What are ways you cope with things that annoy you?

Nicole P. lives in Toronto with her husband and two dogs. She likes to run (mostly solo), do group outdoor conditioning and strength workouts, spinning and a bit of yoga.

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