Running & Living

run for your life

Running & Living

by Patrick Reed

Running is a part of my daily life. It has become a habit for me. My daughter, just today, asked me why I run every day — and aren’t I just running towards an injury? And such and such — which, no doubt, she had heard from my own lips at some moments in time and was simply repeating. Like my subconscious?:)

During my typical day, I find a moment to string up my laces — one of my 5 pairs of tattered trainers attached to those laces — and I escape into the sunlit trails around and near my house. I almost always run up into the hills, often quite steep hills. I absolutely enjoy the undulating trail, coursing back and up and around and down — past twisted trees, tormented scrub brush, harsh cactus groves and sandy, dirty scree and boulders. I find this time of respite either in the mid-morning, after the kids are left off at school – or in the late evening. In the case of the late evening – as I near the end of the day and my whole running regimen compresses and must fit in better to the waning hours – I frequently find myself tapping out my footstrkes on echoing pavement, a few stray cars passing, the streetlights glowing their sour yellows. These late street runs are second in agony only to the enforced structure of the treadmill.

“It seems that busyness always compounds upon itself — concocting more and more excuses for why the “now” must not be sacrificed to the wished for, but instead to the necessary…”

On days like today, I am consigned to the ‘mill – for it is pushing 10 p.m. and still my run awaits. I was too busy during the prime hours to run and now I must pay for my busyness. [It seems that busyness always compounds upon itself — concocting more and more excuses for why the “now” must not be sacrificed to the wished for, but instead to the necessary…] As the hour gets later, although I know I will complete my run, my expectation is more and more muted, and it is as if the dark skies outside contrast in my emotions with the bliss of the sun-drenched mornings – when my mood is even and joyful, my steps light and my mind free of worry and concern. Though still the run is my release, yet as the day wanes and my options isolate, so too does my freedom in the distance-run ebb.

Yet regardless of when I run and what my mood, I always run. I answered my daughter’s questions today with simple and clear reasons for my running life and my daily habit of hitting the roads and trails: “I run daily because I love to. I run every day because it instills in me a daily discipline – a simple expectation of myself of one thing that I must accomplish this day and every day.”

Yes, running is a part of my daily life. I run and live and the two are somewhat indistinguishable — for they overlap and share my day. Busyness does keep reinventing itself and creates new more urgent emergencies. Perhaps my subconscious aim is that in running I daily discover those bucket list wished-for items — and I shun the irrelevant “necessary.”

I should ask my daughter;)

Keep asking!

~Coach Reed

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