Race Hard, Rest Easy
Big high 5 to everyone who’s been training and racing this month (we’ve been fangirling you from afar)! For realz, though: Whether you just ran Boston, or the starting line is still on the horizon this spring, the output of training and racing is both exhilarating and exhausting — physically, mentally, and emotionally.
Pursuing our passions is energizing, but we’re so good at “working” toward our goals that both the body and the mind can easily forget how to relax — which can easily leave us “stuck” in chronic tension somewhere between the opposite extremes of engaging fully and relaxing completely. That tension will drain your energy, leave you frazzled, and hinder your performance.
The solution? Create more space for release. Consciously remind yourself how to let go. After your workout or after you’ve crossed the finish line, use this simple meditation to express gratitude for your amazing body, to acknowledge the significance of what you’ve just done — whether or not you’ve hit your target pace or PR — and, most importantly, to just let go…
1. Lie flat on your back in a big “X” shape — if it’s warm enough, being outside is even better. Allow yourself to spread out so that you immediately feel a sense of spaciousness.
2. Close your eyes and take a deep breath in… a slow breath out… Continue to deepen your breathing.
3. Once your breath feels steady, move your focus down to your feet. Notice how they feel. Whisper “thank you” and allow them to relax and let go.
4. Continue to move your awareness up your body, stopping in each area to say thanks and allow more relaxation, more letting go. Stay as long as needed in each place.
5. Once you finish your scan, say a final thanks to the entire body as you allow it to relax, let go, and drop into the ground a little bit more.
6. Take a final moment to send that gratitude to your teammates, your runlovahs, your competition — to your running community.
7. Embrace the ease — accept it as the reality. Share it with everyone around you. In doing so, you’ll sustain more enjoyment from running and that will impact everything that you do.
Namaste (thank you).