My primary goal in life is to be happy and healthy in my eighties. Healthy enough to run, albeit at a shuffle. So when I spotted a Ted Talk on a 75-year study of how this can be achieved I had to listen to it.
The one common factor amongst those happy and healthy well into old age, no matter what their life circumstances were, was that they had strong social bonds and a supportive life partner.
WHOA! What about me? I do have a wonderful Old Goat who regularly pretends not to hear me but I tend to be a lone wolf, a home-body, definitely not a party wolf. Not even a tea-party wolf. Am I on the wrong track here?
And then it struck me – hell no! What about my running friends? A running friend is the best type of friend. They will drag you out of bed on a winter’s morning, listen to your stories of woe, you will listen to theirs, and one glorious sunrise later you will both feel like a million dollars.
And the longer the distance, the better the friends. Distance running strips you down and lays you bare and sharing those experiences can only create tight bonds. And so the real answer to the question is simple – cherish your running friends and just run, run happy!
Here’s to my running friends – may we all make it into our eighties, with plenty of long, slow distance , more than a few bottles of wine and the occasional cherry cigar!