Running has been something I hated for the vast majority of my life but recently found a joy for in the past sixth months. It wasn’t until a few months ago I realized how slow I had gotten and how much my athletic ability had declined from what it had been when I was in my late teens and early twenties. Running was always the boring part of the sport for me. It was what you did in between practice and I referred to it as “the most boring part of any sport” I was much more into the goal scoring and take downs of soccer and wrestling then the endless running in circles. Now I find it reflective and meditative. I like to think my interest in running has been due to some maturing on my part. Gone are the days of directly competing against others. You can’t physically make anyone slower all you can do is make yourself faster and the only time you can effect is yours.
Pacing is what I’m the worst at, in running and most other aspects of life. Every race I try to stay with the leaders instead of focusing on my goal pace. I know this is a huge rookie mistake that I have been working on correcting. Still need to find how certain pace ranges feel besides all out full effort, and training pace. Hopefully a few more weeks and I will be able to comfortably judge a race pace without relying on strava to tell me how I’m doing at the first half mile. I’ve always wanted to be proficient at things quickly. The 1000 hours to mastery seems like forever but the things I am actually good at I have probably devoted tens of thousands of hours to. The slow racking up of miles underfoot and the meditative pace through the outdoors clears my mind. I’ve been focusing on healing the body from my lack of activity over the years but I have unintentionally been healing my mind as well. Healing it from things I didn’t even know I was suffering from.
I want to hit the trails during my break tomorrow. There’s a park on the north east edge of Olympia full of hills and trails, an easy way to get 8-12 in before the weekend. A few weeks from now I hope to get back to my first endurance sport love, biking. While I hated running growing up and learned to love it now. Spending time in the saddle has always been something I have enjoyed and I didn’t realize how much I missed it till I got stuck in a metal coffin for the past two years. Even though I lived in one of the most bike friendly cities in the US (it actually is not nearly as good as less boisterous cities but that’s a post for another time) I think I only rode my bike to work two times. I never got the improvements made that I wanted either.
Here’s to the road, whether by foot or by pedal.