Running makes all the difference. Running, for me, is not merely exercise, it is meditation, restoration, prayer, and creative inspiration. All that is not to mention fresh air, community, goals, and accomplishments. Nothing but good things come to me from running, aside from the occasional sore knee.
And just imagine if I was a fast runner, because fast I definitely am not.
So why is it that I periodically fall away from it? I’m going along, keeping track of my times and miles, maybe with a 5K in mind somewhere. And then one day, poof! I just stop. And I have no idea why.
Of course, once stopped, it’s a bear to get going again – even if it’s just been a few days. I might have a false start, or several of them, as I attempt to get back in gear.
I feel guilty when I’m in one of these spells. I’m embarrassed even though no one knows or cares. I feel ashamed of myself for not having enough discipline.
I cast around thinking maybe a new pair of shoes would do it, or that I seriously need to find myself a coach – one with the express purpose of kicking my butt out the door.
I study the calendar, and figure if I just set up a schedule, maybe that would do it.
Meantime, it’s easily observable that whilst my running regime languishes, everything else does, too. Creativity goes into sleep mode. Anxiety soars. Even eating becomes problematic – too much or not enough. Everything is just off, out-of-kilter.
I just lately saw this happen. As I type these words, I am laced up in my running shoes. Procrastinating. Almost scared. Why? Why? Why?
Is this a simple matter of discipline? Or does it have to do with the planets? Or is it the result of a triggering experience that is suppressing and exacerbating things of which the lack of running just happens to be the most obvious symptom?
I am inclined, actually, to think it’s the latter. My inability to get myself out the door and down the road during these times reflects an unrecognized emotional reaction. Having the complicated wiring we humans do, the very best thing I could do for myself in the case of said reaction would be to get some miles under my feet. But, you know, self-sabotage.
Sometimes it is very difficult to be good to myself.
Nevertheless, it has to happen. I’ve done it before, and I can do it again. It’s essential to my well-being, on every level. It is a matter of self-compassion, taking good loving care of myself.
OK now, one foot in front of the other.