|Early morning bike ride in Cumbria|
Knowing the days are getting longer is just right for a half-full approach, looking on the positive side of life. Even as we often get the coldest of weather in January and February, I don't really mind because it won't last too long. That's another reason for being optimistic - if it's bad, it won't be for long.
I know a few of my colleagues are struggling right now, many under pressure and stressed and not feeling great. One colleague has recently returned from a period of mental-health related sick leave and another now has a super-bright daylight simulation lamp on a shelf, just above his desk. Neither are runners or sporty in anyway. Running adds courage and confidence, brings about that feeling of "all is well", invigorates, inspires and energises.
Knowing only too well my shortcomings and weaknesses, I can say what a real difference running and, to a certain extent, cycling makes to me at this time of year. In the darkness, gloom and drudgery of commuting in darkness, having a structured run is something to look forward to; a lift and boost towards the end of the day. I'm off to the gym soon for my 80 minute run; I'll be sleeping well tonight in spite of having a lot on my mind around work. Next week we're being externally assessed as an organisation and I'm feeling "on show" as I have written 95% of our application. Part of me is feeling "I don't care what the result is now, I just want it dealt with" and yet the over riding belief is now "we've come this far, let's finish this well". So tomorrow I'm going around with our external consultant to brief staff - and I'm really looking forward to doing that - we've a lot to be proud about. And that's even before I've been for my run!