You can get up every morning at the same time and knock out those two or three or four miles or whatever you feel like, down the same route you travel every day…but in case you haven’t figured it out, that’s boring.
Now, boring isn’t a bad thing if you actually want a new habit. That mindless repetition you find boring may give way to a habit, and may become one of your best venues to let your mind wander. You may find that boring routine is your best place to stumble across new ideas.
However, if that feeling goes beyond boring, if it has you dreading that time when you know you really should be working out and if you find yourself unearthing more and more excuses about why you, you know, don’t really need to push yourself – you’ve been sick, your knee hurts, whatever you need to do to protect your health from your health – then it’s another story.
I like routine for my two- and three-mile walks and runs. My mind can wander for that length of time. For any other length of time, though, I need something more.
Fortunately, around here, something more is pretty easy to find. This past weekend, Scott and I pulled ourselves out of bed bright and early, packed up my camera gear, grabbed coffee on the way out the door, and hightailed it to one of our favorite hikes at Hanauma Bay Ridge – this time, to watch the sun come up.
Not all of those dark shapes on the horizons are clouds. Some of them are mountains rising up from our neighbor islands, past the horizon. That large shadow there is likely being cast by Mount Haleakala, and on top, there are probably lots of folks waiting where we waited to watch the sun come up.
You can imagine the chiefs of old, standing on the ridge and looking out at the other islands, wondering who was standing there and looking back, wondering if they were friend or foe, and wondering what lay there, so close at hand and yet so far away.
This hike never fails to awaken my imagination. While it wasn’t a new hike, seeing it at dawn, meeting new people who had also traveled there to watch the sun rise, and watching the horizon give birth to a new day all made it new again. It made me realize that sometimes, to change your scenery, you don’t need to find a whole new place. You sometimes just need a new perspective.