The truth is that running might very well be my best frenemy. I’m running five days a week now, and can bust out a 3+ mile run before work like I’m walking to the corner to buy milk. On the weekends, I look forward to seeing how my body handles a five miler.
Running is tolerable when it becomes a positive challenge, and right now, I’m enjoying seeing how hard and far I can push myself. I’ll readily admit that I wouldn’t have lost so much weight if it weren’t for running.
Forty-two pounds and shrinking.
This morning, though, I looked at running with an entirely different perspective.
I realized that my morning run is probably my most peaceful time of the day. It has been a very stressful week. Luna has been sick, I’ve been dealing with this weird stomach thing, work has been challenging, and the car added to my woes by mysteriously stalling at a red light on the way home last night.
Because of that last one, I stressed all night, tossed and turned in bed, and then woke up early worrying. I couldn’t clear my head of the thought that the car was going to die on me again, so I lost sleep and drove myself bonkers over something over which I had absolutely no control.
Every morning before I run lately, I take care of Luna. I clean her nose, I feed her, and I try to figure out why she doesn’t seem to be getting better.
Then, I finally lace up my sneakers, turn on the music, and hit the road.
When I run, there is no time to waste worrying. I’m far too focused on pushing myself down the road, trying to improve my time, working on my breathing, and inspiring myself with mini pep talks.
Most mornings, I’m singing along to my tunes as I run.
Basically, I’m too busy being better at life and finding that next gear to have any time for stress. Running clears my Deep Thoughts of all negativity, and somehow takes me to my Zen place even though I’m breathing hard and sweating like a madman.
When I stop to think about it, it’s ironic that I’m in such a rush to complete my run because I should want my moment of peace to last as long as possible.
But what makes my runs so exhilarating, so distracting, and so therapeutic is the fact that kicking ass and proving myself is what brings me mental nirvana.
Bringing out the best in myself chases away the worst thoughts in my head.
It really is that simple.
The stress is gone.
I know I kicked ass.
I’m already thinking about how I’m going to push myself to do better the next time I hit the road.
For the record, the car made it back and forth to work without any problem. Although, I must admit that stress levels rose every time I had to stop for a red light. But I survived.
Work was stressful, but I went for walks on all my breaks and that definitely helped to clear my head and bring me peace.
My stomach is still a little zany, but at least I haven’t woken up in serious pain either of the last two nights.
When I got home from work, Luna was in the kitchen eating on her own. That made me very happy. And guess what she’s doing right now while I’m writing this post…
Is there a particular activity that helps you find the peace of mind you so badly crave?