My love affair with running started in college while earning “aerobics points” as part of phys ed class. For a non-athlete like me, running became the easiest way to comply, with little equipment and no need for try-outs or a team.
33 years later I’m still on the run, at least enough to keep toned and stave-off aging (she hopes!) When you run as much as I do — 15 miles a week on average and always outside, you learn a few things that also apply to life and dreams.
The Temp Doesn’t Lie — It’s often tempting to look outside the window and assume you know how warm or cold it is. Rarely does this work. Like this morning it was beautiful and sunny and I HOPED it was warm but alas, only 35 with the wind chill factor.
Being honest about the temperature means dressing accordingly so the run is more fun. The same has been true in various jobs through the years. Reading the temp in the atmosphere is a learned skill that brings huge benefits. Is my boss in a positive frame of mind? What attitudes or prejudices prevail? Is it the right time to ask for a raise? These questions help us gauge and adapt, leveraging reality for more benefit and less angst.
Be in the Moment — I’ve never been one to play music while running or to take my cellphone. Letting the imagination and heart run along with the body is a rare escape, Using the time to pray and reflect is a gift. It’s amazing how often a new idea for a book, a blog, or even an insight on parenting will come while running. George Bernard Shaw describes the process: “Imagination is the beginning of creation. You imagine what you desire, you will what you imagine and at last you create what you will.”
Focus on Things Beyond the Trail — There are bound to be days when my body screams NO!! I hit the trail anyway and focus on other things, it’s surprising how fast the miles pass by. Life is like this right? There’s the challenge to keep running amidst hurts and winds that say, “Are you crazy?” Maybe we are, or maybe we’re just committed to something beyond the moment. YES we are and yes we can!
So wherever you’re running today…at work, home, or toward one of your dreams, keep on running and I promise, you’ll be oh so grateful later that you did not quit!