Today was my first workout in a few days, thanks to a gross/disgusting cold that’s been making its way around. Normally in my own training regimen, I don’t call cardio on the elliptical or treadmill a “workout,” but today it counted.

(For the record, I consider lifting weights a long-term investment while machine-based cardio is like an infusion of quick cash. Both are cool, but I like big payoffs. Your mileage and returns may vary.)

My heart rate spiked pretty quickly during the workout because I’m still in recovery mode, so I kept my intensity low. And because my intensity was low, I listened to my “chill” iPod playlist, which is filled with songs that are kind of like poems, at least to me.

And a song from the past came on (there’s a playlist to listen to it at the bottom of this entry 🙂 ).

The song has meaning to me for a couple of reasons. But first, it’s not necessarily a GREAT song — although it might be, and I’ve been convinced otherwise. No matter, it’s kind of pivotal in my life. The first time I heard it was on a Saturday morning in 2003 and I was in a car traveling along Old Keene Mill Road in Springfield, Virginia. It was the acoustic version of the Foo Fighters’ “Times Like These.” It mesmerized me and I had to own it, immediately.

Have you ever had a song strike you that way? I think it hit me because a lot of changes were going on in my life and the song kind of summed up how I was feeling. I told my then-husband (who was being kind of a putz at the time, God love him) that I thought it was pretty awesome. He completely disagreed with me, and outlined  the reasons I was wrong.

So anyway, I downloaded the song from Napster (remember Napster?) because you couldn’t buy the song anywhere at that time, and I put it on my mp3 player and listened to it while driving in the car. And since I lived the DC ‘burbs, I spent a lot of time in the car, so the song kind of became embedded in my brain. And then when we moved, the song fell by the wayside.

But it came back several years later, during the divorce. I remember it was on repeat during a brutal winter, when I was getting ready to get ready for my first figure show. Not only was the divorce going on, but during this period a lot of people in my family were sick or passing away, I was in a stupid rebound relationship, and there was a lot of drama related to everything. It was a pretty dismal time.

So this morning when the song came on, a lot of old feelings came back (not about my ex, but about life in general), echoing some new feelings I’ve been experiencing.

No matter how hard we try to keep things the same, it’s not going to happen. That’s not how the world works. People change, situations change, change is the nature of our lives. And while change can be sad and uncomfortable, that’s only if you keep living in the past. You have to keep moving forward.

Another song was also on repeat during that brutal winter — it’s the second song on the playlist, and it features one of my pretend boyfriends, Chris Cornell. :). It talks about how we drop things that are sacred to us. I don’t think that we actually drop them. It might seem like that sometimes, but they often just fall away, during these inevitable times of change and transition.

And they do remain sacred to us, even though we no longer keep them close.

What does this have to do with cardio? With the workout? Nothing, but also everything. Life keeps moving, like the treadmill. You’ve got to keep moving. Sometimes we drop things, sometimes things fall. It’s OK, it’s through this change that we grow.

And that’s kind of the point of it all, isn’t it?