A Runner’s Alphabet—Q Is for. . . .
First of all, I wish everyone a happy, healthy new year!
is is for quandary. In other words, I’ve had a hard time coming up with something. So how about quiet?
I had a very nice time over the holidays—that is, nice but hectic. Getting those last-minute gifts, doing my share of the Christmas baking, being with loved ones for a happy but loud Christmas gathering—all wonderful, but I did long for some peace and quiet, and took it where I found it.
For me this has meant trying to break a lifelong habit. I’m always listening to that inner monologue in my head, re-enacting old dramas and angers (a big one for me), letting whatever is happening right now just drift by while I’m totally oblivious.
I’m not ameditator, although I think of running, working out, and swimming as a form of active meditation. It’s hard for me to sit still!
What I’ve tried instead is to take a mental pause to consider whatever I’m doing right now: brushing my hair, cutting up vegetables for dinner, and any number of normal activities. I notice what my head and body and arms and legs doing: I’m bending over the bathtub to do my hair, standing at the counter with a sharp knife, making sure I brush all of my teeth. The internal monologue and anger slip away as I rest my mind in what I’m doing. The more humble it is, the more it quiets my mind. My anger is mostly about yesterdays, my anxiety is mostly about tomorrows, but now is like giving myself a gift each time I become aware of it.
The next time you go for a run (please bundle up!), try considering what you’re doing as you take each step, inhale the next breath. I hope you’ll find the feeling of freedom and self-acceptance it brings me.
Q can stand for a lot of other things: question, quality, quick-wittedness. I encourage you to explore your own ideas.
Please feel free to send me any questions you might have. I’d love to hear your thoughts.
AND if you don’t want to miss my next blog on how to get fit and stay happily fit, sign up on my mailing list to get it by e-mail the moment I publish it.
Meanwhile, happy running!
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