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Running Is Ritual

Feb 29, 2016

Training

This is a true statement. For 20 years, the first thought that enters my mind when I wake up in the morning is going for a run. And like lightning to thunder, my next thought is coffee. But in that space between the two, with my body heavy on my wrinkled sheets, right before the blurry stack of books on my nightstand comes into focus, I think about the run.

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It doesn’t matter if I can physically run or not. It shows up immediately, and subconsciously, like an itch, nerve endings standing at attention awaiting the command. It’s only in the moments that follow when I realize I’m too tired, or have an injury, or have an obligation to attend to first. But the best of all the days is when I can simply say yes.

Beautiful days, those are. A blizzard is but a fly to swat. Excuses are for other people. Perhaps it’s because you’re ticking the boxes day after day on your training program, your body is absorbing it like water in the desert, and nothing will stop you from drinking. Perhaps it's a subconscious swift kick in the butt after too many days of treating your body like crap. Sometimes, it just happens. Whatever the trigger, suddenly you are awake, and you must.

And you must, you really must. Because there will be days, weeks, months, maybe years when you can’t. And every day that you say yes is the making of a ritual that builds force like the tide, pushing further up the sand to smooth its wispy chaos into something solid you can build a castle on.

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