While awaiting Phantoms in
VMFA 115's ChuLai fuel pits
I'd monitor my static pulse
rate: 61–63 beats per minute

Mattered not till four years later
when, a college junior, I metered
pulse while sitting at kitchen table
doing homework: 73–75 bpm

Whoa. Began jogging that week,
recalling that I'd gotten fit enough
at Parris Island to run 3 mi holding
a nine-pound rifle at port arms

Four years later, living in Tokyo,
did first marathon in 3:25 as static
pulse had been ratcheted down to
61–63 beats per minute a la ChuLai

More tennis than jogging during six
years on Oahu so began running
anew last July amid muggy heat but
going slow as no more races to run

Jogging since 1972 yet never used a
treadmill till this Saturday night after
playing ping pong with Jade and kin
then drifted into the workout room

Was wearing jeans and walking shoes
but tried the treadmill and it felt weird
going nowhere while moving as quick
as the pace and incline settings chosen

Back the next night ready to rock
in running gear: warmup walked
2 mi then a 3-mi run, ratcheting
up treadmill's pace and incline

Upped pace to 7.0 for the final 2 min and
machine shut down automatically after
an hour but checked heart rate after 7.0
and thumper was cruising at 116 bpm

Back on tread after 5 min to wrap hands
around pulse grips and wait for digital
readout gauging body's recovery time
from hour's output: 61 beats/minute

*     *     *   
Bench Marks
ChuLai, RVN, circa 1968
Snow run
Frank Shorter
MC Hammer