On Wednesday, when Emily and I were planning our run, I suggested a change from our usual route. I knew we couldn’t go too far away from our neighborhood since we both had to get back to our usual daily obligations later that morning.
We met up in the location we had run at dozens of times already over the past two years. We started off running along the path I’m familiar with, yet when we came to a certain spot she suggested we make a turn onto a different block rather than proceeding straight ahead like we usually do.
Just one turn.
Just one block.
Yet as soon as we made that turn, I felt as though we were in a completely different place. We found ourselves running around a beautiful blue lake surrounded by houses I had never seen before.
This new area was so close to our usual route, and yet it looked so different. I welcomed the change in routine.
While great comfort can be found in routine, every so often it’s good to make a change. It doesn’t really matter what that change is—it could be taking your kids somewhere they’ve never been before, visiting a friend you haven’t seen in a long time, or shopping at a different grocery store from the one you always go to. Change adds a spark to the monotony that life can sometimes become.
The need for a change is yet another reason why I’m looking forward to running the New Jersey Marathon. I’ve been to New Jersey many times before, since several of my closest friends from college and childhood live there. Yet, I was never in Oceanport—the town where the marathon begins. Nor have I ever been to many of the other towns I’ll be running through on May 5th. These include Monmouth Beach, Long Branch, Deal, Allenhurst, Loch Arbour, Asbury Park and Ocean Grove.
The 16th Annual New Jersey Marathon Weekend will have 12,000 participants from 46 states and 19 foreign countries. Each of these people will be participating in an event that will take them out of their daily routine.
I am one of these people, and I am looking forward to it.