I don’t claim to know much about writing. To be completely honest, I am nowhere close to being talented in the art. There is one thing that I can certainly tell you though, and that is what dirty socks smell like. That’s right… dirty, smelly socks. Socks so smelly that my beautiful, and compassionate wife would not even consider washing them with our “normal” laundry this afternoon. Stick with me, this story is going somewhere.
I believe that life is chocked full of timely metaphors. Doesn’t mean my theory is correct, but this morning my smelly socks reminded me solidly of this philosophy.
As normal, waking before dawn to hit the trail was a psychological challenge. I would like to tell you that I sprung from bed, threw my trail shoes on, and dropped some ridiculous mileage in the dirt. In complete transparency, that couldn’t be further from the truth.
As I headed for the door, I quickly realized that I had forgotten to set my “mornin’mo” timer… no pre-run coffee today, grabbed my shoes, socks, nutrition, and headed for the trail. It didn’t take long for me to realize that something had run afoul, literally. Something in the car smelled really bad.
There is always going to be something out there waiting to hijack your stoke.
Once at the trail head while gearing up, the culprit of the amazingly-putrid odor surfaced. My socks smelled like, well… rotted blue cheese. What I had failed to realize in my foggy-headed-dash to the trail was that I had grabbed a pair of socks that I had worn the weekend before, then left out in the rain, and sun, and humidity all week. You get the point… they had formed a personality.
While sitting there in a bit of disgust (they really did smell that bad), my ego kicked into overdrive. The thought of running in wet, smelly socks, while suffering through a caffeine deficit, and also being completely exhausted from a difficult week at work, began the evil task of derailing my run. We have all been there before, right? My socks being your something else?
As I sat on the curb at the trail head and carried out the internal battle of to-run-or-not-to-run, the morning sun broke the horizon and put an end to my ridiculous conflict. I got up, chased my socks down (they had been wandering around the parking lot since I let them out of the car), and I ran. I put it on the trail, and while doing so completely changed the trajectory of my day for the better. It always does, and it always feels good.
So the metaphor, my smelly socks. My smelly socks could be your anything. A bad week at work, broken equipment, an argument with your spouse, rainy or cold weather, bad news, mental/physical fatigue, or simply the kiddos being out of sorts. There is always going to be something out there waiting to hijack your stoke. Don’t let it. The choice is yours alone to make, and that’s the cool thing! I guarantee that by getting out there you’ll be better for it! I was… smelly socks and all!