Posted by: rundadrun | May 20, 2010

The path less traveled…and for good reason. :)

Why can’t I just stick to the marked path?  It seems like every time I run into a fork in the road, I end up lost.  Several years ago, I decided to go for a “city run” while staying in downtown Columbus, OH on business.  It had just started snowing lightly and was beautiful outside.  One thing my ADD mind does not need is any kind of distraction.  I was looking around at the city as I ran and ended up getting lost and running 6 miles instead of 3.  But, it was a great run and no harm was done.

I found myself in a similar situation yesterday.  I was in Louisville on business and decided to take the advice of a blog friend and run at E. P. “Tom” Sawyer Park.  It is a beautiful park with crushed limestone and paved trails.  When I arrived, I noticed that the main track was a 1 mile loop around the soccer fields.  That is great, except I didn’t want to run 5 loops round and round.  So about halfway around the first loop, I took a detour that said it would add 1.1 miles.  Great, that would be different.  So, off I went.  Only problem was I apparently missed a subsequent sign telling me which way to go, and I ended up feeling a little like Dorothy when the yellow bricks ran out.  Suddenly I wasn’t in Kansas anymore.  The crushed limestone wide trail turned into a  packed-dirt single track with tree roots, and then a muddy rut with rocks and low-hanging overhead trees.  I had my Garmin on, and I was sure I could just back-track, so on I went.  I ended up well off the beaten trail, found my way back and got to see some pretty country.  No harm, no foul.

It reminded me a lot of my life.  There are times that I know I should stick to the marked path and just be happy.  But my need to see new things sometimes takes me to little traveled and sometimes ill-advised roads.  But God is good, and He has provided me with a lot of great signage along my path.  I have a beautiful Godly wife (who deserves much better than me), and lots of great friends to remind me when my path is getting wayward.  Sometimes it is not more than a gentle word or pat on my back that keeps me on the right path.  At times, it has had to be a road block type of direction change, as when my wife helped me kick a decade long addiction to tobacco.  But I have been blessed to have these people in my life.

Luckily, getting lost yesterday was just a matter of taking a few turns and getting in the extra miles I was looking for any way.  But pity the man who ignores all the signs of being wrong, and keeps on heading down the path to trouble.

Don’t be afraid of the path less traveled, but watch out for the path that looks like trouble.

Happy running,



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