Monday, April 27, 2009

Running Philosophy

Being a distance runner doesn't just change your body. It also changes your outlook.

Jack and I were playing outside a few days ago. He rode his trike about three houses away from ours and declared that he was exhausted and could not possibly ride alllll the way back to Stately Wasser Manor.

He chose the wrong person to try to sell that one to.

Instead of getting a piggyback ride back to the house, he got a lecture about how sometimes you get tired, but you still need to dig deep, find strength, and keep going. And how if you ever want to win at anything, you need to keep trying, not give up, and never quit - or you will never have a chance.

Wouldn't you know it, he managed to find the power to move that 100 feet back home, probably just so I'd shut up about it.

Then, last night, I was watching The Amazing Race. The teams were in China and had to endure a foot massage, which was apparently quite painful. There was much yelling and gnashing of teeth, but all I could think was that, sure, it probably hurt a lot. I believed that. But the massage was only 10 minutes. It couldn't be so difficult to endure something for just 10 minutes.

Then, the racers went to the pool where Michael Phelps won his pile of gold medals. They needed to run a 400 meter relay, and my goodness, there was quite a lot of complaining about how hard it was, how exhausted they were, and so on. Then, they showed the finishing times. The slowest team finished in 18 minutes - that means they each swam for 9 minutes total, with breaks while the other team member swam. Swimming is hard, no doubt, but again, it just isn't that much total effort to do what needs to be done.

Running has taught me the importance of tenacity. Even if something seems difficult, chances are, it's not something that needs to be endured for that long. I can suck it up, and I can do it.


Roisin said...

I think that's what's it all about. If it's worth doing, then it's worth the time and effort put into it. Good call.

The Laminator said...

Yes, totally true. If we define the tasks we have to do but the time it takes us to do them and then relate them to running terms, there really isn't anything that we can't do! Totally life affirming. I'm sure Jack is learning that lesson every day.

Nat said...

So very true. My perception of pain and difficult is definitely not status quo. I wish I'd learned it much much sooner.