It’s the holidays, and that means it’s time for tradition. But what traditions are left in this godforsaken year? I bet your annual Turkey Trot was canceled. You probably didn’t line up at your favorite retailer for midnight doorbusters. And if you’re like my family, you even made your little brother and his questionable quarantine status eat Thanksgiving dinner alone on the back patio while everyone else gathered at a family table inside. Sorry, man. At least I brought you wine.
But traditions are important, even in this strange year. They impart a sense of normalcy and belonging, and I’d argue maintaining tradition is more critical than ever in 2020. If sitting on an elderly, corpulent North Pole resident’s lap is your tradition, sure, that one’s probably out amid coronavirus, but we can still bake cookies and deck halls and donate toys and build snowmen. And if you’re looking for one more holiday-season tradition, I encourage you to join me this year in a favorite of mine: streaking.
To clarify, streaking doesn’t mean stripping nude and sprinting through a football field though — honestly — if that’s what keeps you distant and sane this year, I’ll never judge. No, I mean a running streak, where we commit to getting out there for a run every. single. day. during the holiday season. I’m streaking from Thanksgiving to Christmas, at least a mile a day, and I encourage you to join me.
(I realize Thanksgiving already came and went without me telling you my plan, which I blame on how busy I was eating pies.)
But flexibility is the name of the game here. If you didn’t start last Thursday, you could streak every day of Advent instead. Or you could streak the 24 days of December leading up to Christmas. Or if a multi-week streak feels a bit daunting, why not streak all eight days of Hanukkah, starting Dec. 10?
You don’t even have to run. You could instead choose a walking streak or a jump rope streak, if that’s what your body needs. Or if aerobic exercise isn’t in the cards this winter, commit to doing 10 cat-cows before bed each night, and that’s streak-tacular in my book.
For me, the beautiful thing about streaking is it changes the question “will I run today?” — something that to me always makes it sound like a chore — to the much more optimistic “when will I run today?” It will be tough come rainy or snowy days to get out there for at least a mile, but knowing there’s a hard stop at Christmas — and knowing you might do it with me — will help me get through.
And man, doesn’t doing something together sound nice right about now?