laurel richardsonComment

5 more minutes

laurel richardsonComment
5 more minutes

It’s amazing what 5 minutes can do.

As I've gotten older, I've noticed my relationship time has changed. Way back when, I always wanted MORE. More time for playing, more time for recess, more time before bed, more time with sidewalk chalk. I also wanted LESS. Less time in the car, less time wondering around a boring department store while my mom did errands, less time sitting at the dinner table when there was more playing to get back to.


And now that I am training for triathlon, there's a new kind of time.

There is nothing like sport to teach you about the value of time. Nothing. On a recent bike ride, I was doing a handful of intervals as 5 minutes on and 5 minutes off. “On” meant hammer in the big ring. “Off” meant catch your breath and get over it because you're about to be on again. My first thoughts when I saw on my training calendar was 5 minutes is nothing.

Until I did it. 5 minutes is definitely something. The first interval had me hammering my little heart out up a hill. I assumed based on how my lungs and legs were feeling I must've been about 4 minutes in. I checked my watch: 1:33. Oh. Hammer, hammer, hammer. Checked again. 2:54. Seriously? Hammer, hammer, vowed not to look at my watch anymore and wait for it to beep. Years later, it beeped.

Then I had 5 glorious minutes to spin my legs out and contemplate the universe or whatever else I wanted to do while recovering. I thought surely 5 minutes wouldn’t be enough. But I was wrong, again. 5 recovery minutes was luxurious, almost an eternity before I was going to do it all over again and again and a few more times. I probably only road my bike for about an hour and a half but I noticed every second of it.

When I get sucked into watching movie trailers or browsing online, hours can go by and I hardly notice. Take that amount of time and apply it to exercise? By the time I come home, it feels like I’ve been on a journey. I feel like I’ve been gone so long, my neighbourhood grew-up and moved out.

Lesson? Time is precious and I get the privilege of learning this every time I break a sweat.