Some time ago I set a “fitness” goal for myself: I said I would start running. As in, running regularly and being able to run for one minute without stopping and, as we say in French, spitting my lungs out (classy I know).
This was a real challenge to me. I always hated running. Hated with a passion. Speed running for 100 meters, ok. Endurance running, not ok. I remember in high school dreading PE, even more so as our teacher was a female version of Sgt. Hartman. She would have us run for what seemed like ages, and every time I believed I was going to die.
Anyway, back to the now. Let’s call this a twist of fate**, or some crazy thought from my twisted mind, but I figured that if I hated it so much years ago, why not give it a try now that I’m in much better shape than I was back then*? You know, just for fun (I have a strange idea of “fun”). And no, I don’t run to lose weight I don’t need to lose 😉
Also, to give me an extra kick in the asana, I signed up for a race. A small one (5k), a real one, attainable, not too soon so I can train properly. What makes it even better is that this 5k is in December. DECEMBER, of all months, people. Which means I have to get used to running in the cold. Oh it’s not cold yet, but it will come. It’s Belgium, so it might as well rain. I have to be ready to face any kind of weather, so running outside it is. I’m ready to cancel my gym membership.
I started running about 3 weeks ago, and I have learned a couple of things (I’m a fast learner):
– Much to my surprise, I like it. No, wait, scratch that, I love it. I don’t know how this happened, but I’m actually looking forward to my runs. I never ever thought I would say that, let alone write it for the whole world to contemplate;
– Stepping out of my comfort zone is not killing me;
– Running is moving meditation. I swear. I focus on my breath, and there I go, forgetting everything for 30 minutes and above all quieting my mind;
– It’s a breathing exercise, first and foremost. My body is able to follow, my legs are strong enough to carry me where I want to go, but if I don’t pay attention to my breath, I stop and die. Ok not literally but man do I feel it;
– Yoga asanas come in handy when it’s time to stretch;
– I’m stronger than I thought I was.
Not bad after three weeks, eh?
What have YOU learned lately?
* confession: by “back then” I mean when I was 18 – 15 bloody years ago.
** one day I’ll make a confession post, and I’ll explain.