It's hard to be happy if you don't feel good.
When exercise is part of your daily routine, you are healthier and happier than living a sedentary life. But it has to be programmed into your routine or, you know, you won’t do it. Recently Terry and I were surrounded by more than five hundred happy, healthy people who came together for fun and exercise. You can see the health in many who participated and you know they have exercise as part of their daily routines.
On Saturday morning, the day before Easter, we took part in Woodland, Washington’s annual Tulip Trot. We walked 1,968,505 inches from the Holland America Bulb Farm on a loop that took us along the dike that keeps the Lewis River and the Columbia River from turning the tulips into tulip soup.
If you wonder why I used inches to tell you how far we walked, it’s because I wanted it to sound impressive. I don’t think it’s any different than converting miles into kilometers. Runners love to brag about running 5Ks and 10Ks (not because they use the metric system, but because it just sounds like more). A 5K run is only 3.10 miles and it’s just not as impressive as saying 5Ks. You never hear a marathoner say she ran 42 Ks because 26.2 miles is impressive enough and besides, we all know that a marathon is 26.2 miles so she doesn’t have to say anything except the word, MARATHON. And, us non-runners’ brains can’t conceive of running 6.2 miles let alone 20 more after that, so all we really need to hear to be impressed is just the word.
Terry was the self-proclaimed official photographer of this year’s Tulip Trot and the weather was a photographer’s dream, as you’ll see in the photo’s he took. There were some angry clouds threatening to dampen the trot, yet it never happened, and the black and gray clouds against the brilliant tulips were stunning.
This is the start of the race and this man won. I was near him when he got to the finish line (not that I kept up with him in the race, in fact, we didn’t start until everyone got back). He was barely out of breath. It was so interesting to see, up close, how effortless the race was for some of the runners and how hard it was for others. I guess it just tells you who has exercise as part of a daily routine.
This family was adorable! The two little girls were so excited to finish the whole 1,968,505 inches! There were so many families out together and it was such a joy to witness.
As soon as the race was over, Terry and I set out to trot – that is walk. I loved this shot Terry got of a red tulip in a sea of yellow ones. It reminds me how fun it is to be unique!
These Canadian Geese took our undivided attention as they cackled in for a landing in this farmer’s field. They were greeted by a flock that had already made themselves at home. It must have been a great flying day for a goose, for we saw thousands and I don’t think they were coming in for Easter Sunday.
It took us about an hour and a half to walk the route because of all the incredible photo ops. I got to be Terry’s human bipod, for many of his photos (he didn’t want to haul his tripod on the walk). He put the camera on my head to take these pics that were far away and needed a steady shot.
You don't have to start exercising like these people. Walk to the mailbox. Walk to the street. Walk around the block. The distance doesn't matter....the fact you are starting to exercise is what counts.
There are wonderful opportunities like this event, all across the country. I think I’d be a great way to start getting exercise on your calendar. It was the first organized run I’d ever been in, because I thought you couldn’t be in them if you didn’t run. Hah! Well I got my eyes opened and it was so much fun we’re going to start finding more 1,968,505 inch walks. For now I’ll tell everyone who will listen, “ I just did a 1,968,505 I."
P.S. Feeling good physically will bring you happiness. Feeling good emotionally will bring you happiness. I share dozens of ways to feel better in my latest book The Joy of Being Disorganized.