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I was out on Peavine the other day scampering around on some rocks and enjoying some sweet trails (as one does) when I saw a few mountain bikers zooming down a trail not too far from me. After they rode past I saw a dog just booking it down the trail after them. It was a sight to see. I’m sure a lot of you reading this have seen the same scene many times.

I was doing some laps on an easy boulder testing out some sandals I had gotten when I looked up to see this delightful entourage. I couldn’t tell you much about the mountain bikers that zoomed by but that dog… oh man that dog.

The dog chasing the mountain bikers was moving faster than I could sprint for sure. But of course he was making it look easy like he was just loping along on an average day. Nothing to see here. Just a normal everyday occurrence. As this dog was booking it after the bikes (somehow making it look like it was no big deal) I noticed a few things.

The first was that the dog looked at ease. He didn’t look gassed. He didn’t look upset. He didn’t look concerned… but he was moving so fast and so fluid. It was magical to see an animal move like that. It honestly was mesmerizing. I wondered if I ever looked fluid when I ran (albeit quite obviously at a noticeably slower pace).

The second thing was that the dog looked happy. The dog looked so so so very happy running down that trail chasing after those humans on bikes. His tongue was hanging out and he had the closest thing to a smile a dog could manage and he seemed light and free as a bird. I was a little envious.

It made me think though. I was moving over stone myself (always a pleasure) and I was going up and down the hills outside of town. Really I wasn’t having a day much different than him. Of course I could never chase a mountain bike going downhill and if I ever got even close to the speed that dog was at I would burn out or injure myself- but I was outside moving in the body that I had. I was thankful for whatever it would allow me to do and I should not take that for granted.

I realized that there was no competition in this case between me and my furry trail neighbor. I realized that we all could be thankful to move in whatever ways our bodies would allow us. So just remember that you and me and Rex can all be “the happiest dog” out there. We don’t always have to think about the outcome- sometimes we can just enjoy the process.

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