May The 4th Mile Be With You!

running, fitness, health, exercise, Star Wars, humor, motivation, Modern PhilosopherAfter months of lollygagging along my running route, Modern Philosophers, I decided to search my feelings and trust the Force.

So this morning, I put on my Jedi robe rather than my running toga (I left the lightsaber at home, though, since I’m a total klutz and didn’t want to accidentally lop off a leg) and set out to finally tackle a four mile run.

It’s not like I haven’t run four miles before, but I hadn’t yet conquered that distance this year.  Usually, I would have built up to at least one five mile run a week at this point, but I’m still struggling with three milers like a novice Jedi stranded on Dagobah.

After a little pep talk from The Other Melissa earlier in the week (and by “pep talk” I mean she gave me @#$% about how out of shape I was, and the words really hit home since she is tiny enough for me to eat as a midnight snack), I looked deep within myself (I had to get really deep to bypass all the fat) and realized that these wimpy three milers just weren’t going to get me where I wanted to be.

Unless, of course, I stopped eating and didn’t want to reach my ideal weight until age 74.

Like a Jedi bad ass following the advice of Obi-Wan and Yoda, I did a little soul searching and trusted that my body, as out of shape as it might be, still had the ability to survive a four mile jaunt as long as I kept the pace within reason.

Because, quite honestly, enough was enough.

I’m tired of looking and feeling like crap and having zero self-confidence.  If I want to make changes, then I need to get up off my ass and start kicking some ass.

motivation, inspiration, running, fitness, health, humor, Modern PhilosopherYou know Yoda probably said something along those lines to all the young Jedi in training, but the censors made him clean it up for the movie.

“Smaller, tighter ass for the ladies you want, then kick major ass you must do!”

It was a morning much too warm for the twenty-second day of October, and a light rain was falling.  I hit the road at a ridiculously slow pace that would have allowed turtles to pass me, but unlike those speed demon terrapins, I didn’t have a shell to take refuge in if my body failed me along my route.

I was going to complete the four miles if I had to crawl back to The House on the Hill.  Anything less than the full distance would be a failure, and the fat would win.  The only way to keep my body from giving itself over to the Fat Side completely was to show it who was boss by bending it to my will, even if doing so took the entire day.

I was so determined to not burn out on the first half of the run, that it took me twenty-four minutes to reach the two mile mark.  Yikes!

On the way back, I tried to pick up the pace, but my legs and lungs were a lot more stubborn than I hoped they’d be.  If only they put as much effort into the run as they did at resisting the exercise, I would’ve broken the world record for a four miles.

Sheer will was the only thing that kept me going.  Well, that and the realization that the only way to get back to The House on the Hill was under my own power.  As much as I wished I could, I would not be able to use the Force to bring the house to me in middle of Eastern Avenue.

At one point, as the twin suns of Tatooine beat down relentlessly on me, and the Tusken Raiders and Jawas watched me from afar, ready to pounce on me and pick my skeleton clean for parts, I began to chant to myself…

running, fitness, health, motivation, inspiration, Star Wars, humor, Modern PhilosopherYou’re not ready for this.  You’re not ready for this.

It was just like the night I lost my virginity.  Only with less sweat.


I had worked up quite the sweat on my adventure, and that, combined with the rain, had left me a soggy mess.

I was the only one stupid enough to be out in the rain, but the quiet allowed me some time to think.

Yes, I was struggling.  Yes, I probably wasn’t ready to tackle this distance yet.  No, despite all my intense internet research, there did not appear to be a magic pill that would allow me to suddenly be skinny and fit again.

So I was going to finish the damn run, even if my inner Jedi was covering the distance less like Daisy Ridley’s Rey and a hell of a lot more like Ray Charles.

They say that which doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.  In my case, however, it just made me sweaty, sore, and require a really long recovery time on the front porch as I chugged water and prayed to the goddess Nike to just do it and put me out of my misery.

If Yoda had appeared to me as a ghost and given me some of that “Do or do not, there is no try” gobbledygook, I would have told him that while I understood it wasn’t easy being green, he could make his life much simpler if he just went to see a Speech Therapist.

Of course, I would’ve regretted saying something so harsh to Yoda once I’d recovered from my four mile run, but that probably won’t be for another two to three months, so I have plenty of time to come up with the perfect apology.

I might be babbling like C-3PO after a power surge, but the bottom line is that I’m damn proud of myself for forcing myself to run four miles.

humor, fitness, running, exercise, Star Wars, Daisy Ridley, confidence, Modern PhilosopherIt’s not exactly using the Force, but it’s Jedi enough to give me the confidence to ask Rey if she’d like to grab dinner and maybe check out my lightsaber.

What’s that look for?  A Jedi’s training is never done…

Comment on this post, follow my blog, check me out on Pinterest.  If you don’t, the Dark Side wins!

About Austin

Native New Yorker who's fled to the quiet life in Maine. I write movies, root for the Yankees, and shovel lots of snow.
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2 Responses to May The 4th Mile Be With You!

  1. AthenaC says:

    It really is very powerful to be able to tell your body, “Quit your whining!” Out loud if you must. For me, that was the beginning of a 40-lb weight loss. So it can be done! May the force be with you!

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