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As a runner (I can call myself that now), there’s nothing quite like purchasing new running shoes.

They look great.

They feel great.

You get passing comments from other runners.

You want them to stay that way forever.

Except that you don’t.

If they stay new and shiny, it means that they’re not being used.

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There’s a difference between looking out the window and observing the weather conditions and actually being outside experiencing the real thing.

You can see the warm sun, or you can feel the warm sun.

You can see the rain, or you can feel the rain.

You can see the flowers, or you can smell the flowers.

You can see the leaves falling, or you can feel them crunch under your feet.

It’s nice to observe, but it’s better to experience.

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Atlanta Dream Coach, Mike Peterson recently had a thought for the day for his WNBA team. He said:

“When the winds of change blow, some people build walls for protection.

Other people build windmills, to create power.

DT and I, we’re in the windmill business.

We’re going to build windmills after windmills after windmills.

OK? Let’s have a good day.”

What a fantastic principle.

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My garden loves the rain.

The lawn soaks it up.

The trees soak it up.

Every plant seeks out the moisture and soaks it up.

And in doing so they get stronger and healthier.

There is rain in our lives that we should be soaking up as well.

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As I write this post, my legs are aching and I’m feeling very tired.

But there’s a story behind the pain.

It started with a family conversation about running, Ekidens (a form of Japanese long distance relays) and a local event that matched our aspirations.

My brave and enthusiastic nephew, Lachlan, registered us, we came up with a suitable, Lord of the Rings inspired team name (Very Dangerous Over Short Distances) and then we were committed.

Yesterday, seven of us, Logan, Danny, Lachlan, Ebony, Madison, Macrae and myself, completed the O’Keefe Challenge Ekiden Relay event, a 42.2km relay that tested our physical capabilities, but was incredibly fun.

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