Is this what’s known as a runner’s high?


cc licensed ( BY ND ) flickr photo shared by h.koppdelaney

Something strange happened to me last night; so strange, I’m compelled to tell you about it even though I haven’t had my first cup of coffee.

I started my evening walk normally enough, with Roxy at my side.

We took off at a moderate pace and against my better judgement, I turned up the volume on my iPod slighter higher than I normally do.

As we passed the cemetery, something startled me.

Fear made my skin crawl and my mind was bombarded with zombie scenes like those featured in the Walking Dead.

However, upon turning around, I realized a girl on her bike was patiently waiting for Roxy and me to get out of the way.

We let her pass and continued on our way.

However, my fear induced state of agitation continued, and I found myself walking at a faster pace.

As I passed the roundabout that lead to our house, I continued to walk faster and faster.

Roxy, warrior that she is, kept up valiantly.

Attributing my energized state to the adrenaline hit I had received back at the cemetery, I powered on, ignoring the street that led to our house.

Instead, I found myself heading for the roundabout a second time.

Almost at a trot, Roxy and I pushed on.

Suddenly, I became aware that the niggling worries that had bothered me when I started my walk, had disappeared.

They had been replaced with a blank state of mind.

Yes, folks, my mind was blank.

No thoughts. No worries. No preoccupations.

Just Roxy and I trotting at breakneck speed.

(Now that I think about it, I realize anyone looking out the window must’ve thought we were two crack heads out for a psychedelic power walk.)

Passing the roundabout a third time, something did pop into my head.

It was the scene of from the movie, National Lampoon’s European Vacation; the one where Chevy Chase’s character and his family are in London and he’s unable to switch lanes.

Over and over, they drive past Big Ben, unable to get to the left lane that leads to the exit.

For some reason, I felt like Chevy must’ve felt when he couldn’t slow down to switch lanes.

In the meantime, Roxy made the unfortunate move to make a poop stop.

This resulted in her being pulled; half the turd still attached to her butt.

Again we passed the street that lead to our house and again we ignored it.

Faster and faster we power walked.

The idea that I was under the effects of a runner’s high, even though I wasn’t running, did enter my mind.

Yes, surely that must be it.

I felt like I was on overdrive, yet light as a feather.

The world was my oyster, but only if I kept going.

I realized this was the reason marathon runners looked so emaciated.

They had discovered the runner’s high, and unwilling to let it go, they had paved the pavement until they weighed 90 pounds.

As I neared the roundabout a fourth time, Roxy gave me a look that said, “Bitch, are you crazy?”

Ignoring her, I kept going, intent on retaining the feeling of elation.

However, when we took the bend, our crazed walk was halted by the sight of two men in a car waving frantically.

Afraid that Roxy had fainted from exhaustion and I’d been dragging an empty leash, I paused long enough to remove an ear bud.

That’s when I heard the two words that brought me out of my adrenaline trance: “Nice ass!”

Like a meteor falling from the sky, I plummeted to earth; my state of nirvana gone just as suddenly.

Roxy, panting next to me, still found the energy to wag her tail, while I flipped them off.

Slowly, we walked the rest of the way home; Maxine Nightingale screaming through my ear buds, “We gotta get right back to where we started from.”

And that we did.
Roxy, me, and my nice ass.

Have you ever experienced a runner’s high?

42 thoughts on “Is this what’s known as a runner’s high?

  1. Wow!! And you told this story so wonderfully, I felt my adrenaline increasing as I was reading this!!

    I used to run a lot and would get that high, and yes, it made me keep running farther and farther. It feels wonderful. Just as addictive as any drug.

    Poor Roxy thought!

    Why did you flip the guys off who said you have a nice ass? Ok, I know it’s piggish of them but hey, doesn’t it feel good still? :-)

  2. Michael Ann, I flipped them off because they robbed me of the runner’s high! hee hee! What’s funny about the elation bit is that I wasn’t running, just walking really fast. It was crazy! In a good way. :) I’m tickled pink you liked the post!

  3. HAHAHA. I just read Beverly’s comment, and she summed up everything I wanted to say! hahahah. Bella, I was at the edge of my seat reading this! and I swear, my breathing increased and I felt like I was running with you! Ok, maybe my cold is just getting worse…

    • bwhahaha! I want to think it’s a combination of your cold and my post! I’m so glad you were able to join me on my quasi run. You should have been there with us, Laura! :)

  4. I love that feeling!! I can’t run, no way no how, but I get that feeling about 10 minutes into a session on the ramp climber or ellipical at the gym. Nothing like it. Love this post! Roxy is a champ.

    • Lori, then I’m not crazy? This actually happens when you’re not running? Well, that’s a relief. And here I thought I was loosing my mind, friend! :)

  5. First. I LOVE YOU! Second, I love that part in the movie! Third, I LOVE the runners high and get it more now than I ever have since I switched to my new barefoot running shoes. Fourth, I LOVE YOU! Fifth, how is it that every time I read your words…repeat…every time I read your words, you make me squeal with laughter!? Sixth, I LOVE YOU!:) p.s. by the way, I have the most nasty flu with a temp. and still, you made me laugh. You’ve got something amazing in that soul of yours my friend. Somethin’ amazing!:)

    • Brynne, I love you too, friend! That movie has to be one of my old time favorites! I laughed all the way through it. Hey, my nephew bought some of those barefoot running shoes and says they’re wonderful. Maybe they have barefoot walking shoes! hee hee! Thank you for your sweet words, lady. They truly make my day! :)

  6. What’s amazing is that tiny-legged Roxy can keep up you! She’s a trooper–but she must be hopin’ you get no more highs. (I get that wonderful high from mountain hiking.)

    • Jann, Roxy’s a tiny warrior! You should have seen how fast her tiny legs were carrying her! I definitely have to try mountain hiking if it provides one with that wonderful high! hee hee! :)

  7. Funny piece! I can relate since I also walk my dogs and sometimes walk so quickly that I almost jog – sort of a half walk, half jog I like to call a “wog”. And then I like to say to myself, “I wog with my dogs.” However, I have not been lucky enough to get the runner’s high yet. I just get asthma and feel as though I’m practically dying. I also relate to the thin runner humor and recently put up a Facebook post which said something to the effect of, “Why do runners like to run so much? Is it because they love it because it makes them so skinny, or is it because they have less wind resistance than the rest of us?”

    • Cindy, I love the term “wog”! And I love your Facebook post! Every time I see a marathon runner, I’m certain running is what keeps them in such an emaciated state. I’m sorry your asthma prevents you from getting the runner’s high. Bummer! But I’m sure we can think of another way for this to be feasible! :)

  8. I haven’t experienced a runner’s high — I’d have to either run or walk fast for that, and I’m way to lazy. Does the writer’s high count? It’s similar, and I experience those. :)

    Oh, and by the way, Roxy can’t possibly look as a crack head, she’s way too cute! :)

    • Ivana, the writer’s high most definitely counts! I’ve yet to experience that one! Roxy is grinning from ear to ear at your compliment! :)

  9. Too funny, Bella! Yes, lots of times when I walk my Sheltie, we “zone out” to our surroundings. But then along comes another person or dog we know, and we’re zapped right back to Mother Earth! Roxy is a cutie — I can just hear her thinking, “What’s the matter with Mom??”

    • Debbie, I’m delighted you found the post funny! Your Sheltie is beautiful! Roxy and I take daily walks, up to three a day. It’s our special time. I get to invoke my creative muse and she gets plenty of exercise. I know the zoning out feeling well and like you, am brought back to earth by any interruption. Sometimes that’s good but other times, it’s a bummer. I think Roxy was wondering what the heck was going on every time we went past the street that lead to our house. Poor Roxy! :)

  10. I used to run and sometimes I would get a such a rush of joy… I tingled all over. Not sure if it was a runner’s high or not. Every once in a while, it happens in dance class, too. Whatever it is, it makes me happy. I guess it’s my body’s way of making sure that I keep moving.

    • Shary, it sounds like the same feeling of elation I got last night! It must be the endorphins cursing through our bodies but I like your explanation better! The body’s way of making sure you keep moving. I love it! :)

  11. Delightful read! ROTFLMAO! I can see the whole scene as surely as if I’d been walking along with you and Roxy.
    I used to be an avid runner, but never had any runner’s highs. Many I didn’t run fast or far enough. But if I still ran, someone might come along and say to me, “Nice ass” too. Maybe.

    • Debra, I am thrilled that you found this post funny! And for the record, I’m certain, without a shadow of a doubt, that were you to go out running, someone would come along and objectify you in the same fashion! hee hee! I’m glad we were able to drag you along on our quasi run! :)

  12. I have never run ( so not sure how to compare) but I have this feeling a lot when I am walking (yesterday). I love it. Of course, I didn’t have the the dark and scary thoughts and I confess the Vacation crew never enters my mind, which is good because it kill myself laughing. As for that state of mind, don’t you wish you could bottle it and dab it behind your ears as needed – like when you have 37 loads of laundry and a house to clean?

    • Brenda girl, I’m happy to add your name to the list of women who’ve experienced runner’s high without actually running! hee hee! And yes, lady, I most definitely wish we could bottle up the feeling to be brought out when the house looks like a loony bin. Don’t get me started on laundry. I have at least ten loads that need to be done! I hate laundry! And hey, if you’re doing laundry, the house can wait and vice versa! :)

  13. That’s happened to me. I used to have a friend that walked with me and Henry at night, but she injured her foot, so now we walk alone. When this happens, I generally don’t listen to my iPod in the dark. But the other night I did, and found myself continuously looking over my shoulder, feeling like someone was behind me. Then I saw that someone was and I totally freaked. Henry and I sprinted home. That’s it, I can’t listen to music when walking at night. Thanks for the reminder. Glad I’m not the only one!

    • Monica, you’re right. Listening to your iPod is not wise when it’s dark. I usually listen to my low enough to listen to the sounds around me as well. When I wrote this blog post, however, I did listen to it mor loudly. Not smart, I know, but it does help me walk faster. Maybe this is why I got the “walker’s” high? :)

    • Kim, you sweet thing, you! Thanks for worrying about us! Yes, we are generally careful and the Significant Other, if he’s home from work, will join us. But you’re right, and I will be more careful! Roxy sends you doggie kisses and I just send you regular human kisses. hee hee! :)

  14. Bella,
    i love your writing. Funny, clear, interest, conflict! You have a ways with words. I was there on the road with you. Course, my ass might not be as nice. Wish we could walk together, we’d probably laugh like old friends! I am posting this on twitter!
    Love,
    Jodi

    • Jodi, and the rest of these lovely ladies really know how to make a girl’s day! Thank you so much! You are beautiful and I’m sure your ass is as nice, or nicer than mine! hee hee! Indeed, something tells me our walk would be filled with giggles and falling on the ground laughing! Thank you for the Twitter love, sister. It is much appreciated! Love ya!

  15. I’ve run for about 25 years now but have only experiences a true runner’s high – oh – twice. Sadly, once you experience it you will die trying to RE-experience it!! Nevertheless, it also clears the dustbunnies that crowd my brain. No one – I repeat NO ONE – has ever yelled ‘Nice ass!” to me while running (or any other time for that matter!)…. does that mean I don’t have one? I shall think of you on my run this evening – avoiding all roundabouts :)

    • Oh Astra, you have me rolling on the floor laughing! The Significant Other and I can’t stop chuckling at your comment! Really! Oh no! Does that mean it’s hard to re-experience the runner’s high? I’m heartbroken! Maybe if I actually ran, I might have a better chance! In any case, I’m willing to try for as long as it takes. If you see me passed out by the side of the road, Astra, please call 911! hee hee! :)

    • Anna, the photo credits are located underneath the shot itself. I wish this shot was mine but the photographer is something way more talented! If you click on it, it will take you to the original page. That said, I’m delighted you think I made a good photo choice for this post! Thank you! :)

  16. Definitely had a runner’s high. When you feel like you could go on forever! Love it! Love it! Love it! Never got the ‘nice ass’ comment, though. Well, except when I was jogging with MY dog, who is often mistaken for a burro. True story. :)

    • bwhahaha! Diane, really? A burro? I have to hop on over to that blog of yours and see if I can see a photo of that lovely animal! And really, isn’t that runner’s high the ultimate state of nirvana? hee hee! :)

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