Thursday, November 18, 2010

Why Running is Better than Happy Hour

On Tuesday night I got off work at 6 pm (free at last!), walked home, changed into running clothes, and headed out for a much-needed run. I headed south through Dupont Circle, dodging cranky commuters and peeved
pedestrians leaving work, to meet 6x6 under her awning in Foggy Bottom (exactly a mile from my house) where she was stretching awaiting my arrival.

Me: Hey! Sorry I took so long – stupid stoplights!

6x6: S'ok, where do you want to go?

Me: Somewhere without stoplights?

6x6: Ok, so the Mall.

That decision made, we started running.

Just a few strides in, 6x6 hit me with a challenge. Ok Mollie, give me ten reasons why I shouldn’t be at happy hour right now.

I didn’t expect to have to talk her into running with me. Wait, what? Why?

6x6: Ten good reasons. Come on! And they can’t have anything to do with calories or exercise. Go. I need them. Convince me that I shouldn’t be drinking gin and tonics right now if you love running so much!

I was a tiny bit taken aback by this sudden demand, but happy to oblige. Because I do love running, and I really believe it is way better than drinking.

Ok, ummmm, ten? That’s kind of demanding, but can do it!

1. You always feel glad you ran and better after running, while drinking will just make you feel icky later tonight. It has a very short happy-time return.

2. Drinking will make you feel even ickier tomorrow morning.

3. It’s nice and warm out so we should take advantage of the ability to run outside in shorts while we can.

4. It’s been raining all day and we haven’t been outside at all – fresh air is nice.

5. You’ve been sitting at work all day – you need to move!

6. Exercise produces endorphins, which make you happy, while alcohol is a depressant, so it would make you sadder.

7. We’re racing on Saturday.

8. You raced on Sunday so you need this to shake out your legs.

9. If you go to happy hour you’ll end up eating chips and salsa for dinner, which is yummy but not satisfying or good.

10. The Monuments at night are beautiful.

Wha-BAM. Done. And then we went for a lovely 6-miler around the Lincoln and Washington Monuments and had deep and meaningful conversations about employee management and medical accountability and capitalism v. socialism and our weekend plans.

Aka soooo much better than happy hour!