Sunday, December 30, 2012

Streaking On The 'Mill

When an candidate is elected to the U.S. Senate or House of Representatives, the Member-elect attends a week-long boot-camp on "How to be a Member of Congress."  One piece of advice the House and Senate Leadership offers new Members is to purposefully miss an inconsequential vote (i.e. putting Joe the Schmo on the next Forever stamp) early on in their first (and each subsequent) term.

Otherwise, as a consequence of being an over-achieving new Member, they start a vote-attendance streak and once long, that streak is hard to break.  Stories abound of Members doing all manner of flight itinerary gymnastics in order to attend even the most meaningless votes simply to keep the streak alive.

That was me on Friday, trying to do all sorts of running route gymnastics to avoid running on the treadmill.  Most of us will go to pretty substantial lengths to avoid the 'mill, but as each snow flake buried my outdoor speed workout just a bit more, I realized I hadn't run on a treadmill since August or September of 2011.  That's at least 14 months.  While a welcome streak for someone who doesn't love running inside, how far was I willing to go in less-than-ideal conditions to keep it alive?

It turns out, not very far.  It's pretty simple math: I value my non-torn hamstrings more than I do a streak of not running on the treadmill.  [Or I value my collar-bone more than I do riding outside in the snow.  Or...or...or.]

Although, simple math or not, I do know myself pretty well.  I left every stitch of cold weather running gear at home.  Just in case I got a "good" idea.

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