One of the worst parts about getting older is you start to realize that everybody wasn't just lying. Every part of it is true. One day you just wake up and instead of a hangover magically curing itself after a breakfast sandwich, they last for several days. One day you just wake up and you're never able to sit down or get up without grunting again. And one day you just wake up and your back is completely fucked out of nowhere. Not because you did some excruciating workout the day before. Not because you really did any sort of overly strenuous athletic activity at all. But just because of existence.
There was a time in your life that you thought stretching was a joke. Maybe you thought it was just a way for your coach to waste some time before or after practice. Just those 5 minutes of practice where you could tell some dick jokes and make fun of the weird kid on the team. If you had a game at 9 in the morning you could roll out of bed at 8:35, hammer a pack of pop-tarts for breakfast, pull up to the parking lot by 8:57, and be running at full speed by 9:01 without hesitation.
But then one day your body just says no. For most folks I'd imagine that day is right around 30. Maybe you pull up to the golf course a little too close to your tee time so you have to skip the range, and your practice swing on the first tee is wildly too aggressive. Now your back is fucked, your shoulders are shot, and you just never recover from that point on. You can't even be a functioning member of society without 10 minutes of stretching to start your day. Play some pickleball a couple days in a row over the weekend? You're going to wake up every morning for the rest of your life feeling like your hamstrings are about to snap. Let's just say you have 40 years left to live. That means you have 21,024,000 minutes left on Earth. Chances are you're going to be spending at least 2 million of those minutes stretching.
Stretching sucks. It hurts, it takes too long, and it's a swift kick to the groin to remind you that your time is fleeting. It's quite the conundrum, actually. Every time you have to stretch you're reminded that time keeps marching on at a rapid pace and you're only going to continue getting older. But if you don't stretch, you feel like absolute death the rest of the day.
The moral of the story here is that for anyone reading this blog right now who doesn't get it, cherish it. It's only a matter of time before sneezing a little too hard throws out your back for the rest of the week.