One thing my wife and I have learned on our many hikes through the mountains, is that on the steep downhill parts of the trail, it’s best if we don’t try to break our momentum. Instead, we run. That way, when the hike is done and in the days following, there’s no pain in our feet and knees and ankles. Also, the alertness, attention, and coordination required is a stimulating balm for the body and mind, and reminds us what folly it is to assume a separation between the two. We’ve learned, too, the art of the cushioned landing and of moving with a spring in our step. Our feet seldom bear our full weight; our very beings, even less. And of course you see the connection between this and how we live as we age — not with a fear of falling, or arriving at death too soon, but with gratitude for our muscles and lungs, and for our fairy tale love.
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