I recently did a seemingly innocent 13-mile run around the Charles River, here in Boston. Little did I know that I’d be nursing Achilles pain for the next two weeks, but that’s a story for an ‘injuries’ post. I chose to run tech free, as it let’s me tune in to my life and my thoughts. It’s hard to carry these thoughts back into the real world, because the minute the run ends we jump back into the raging rapids of this thing called life. I’ve struggled with this attitude of always having a list of things i NEED to get done, and never taking the time to sit down, relax, and reflect. That is what i hope to accomplish by writing thoughts from my daily exercise routines. In reflecting back on a routine just after completion, you are able to appreciate the challenge that you just over came, and not just thinking about the meal that you are going to reward yourself with! This acknowledgement and documentation of your work can provide a deeper meaning to your daily workouts and hopefully added benefit to perform at your best and see what boundaries you can push.
As for being tech free: no watch, no pod, no telly. It’s just me, my yellow Saucony’s, and my orange road ID. Oh and more than likely some goofy combination of spandex and fluourescent. Yet again, topic for another conversation. I like the freedom of letting my thoughts drive my distance run. I don’t want to be guided by a three minute and thirty second track, which is capable of dictating my pace, mood, and judgement. Give up the ‘what’s next’ mentality of your mp3 player and focus on the ‘what’s now’ dish in your head.
For instance today’s song in my head was the track Prayer of the Refugee by Rise Against. IN fact, during the run i couldn’t remember the bands name, and never knew the track name. I own the Rise Against album with this track (One of the very limited CDs i have purchased in the last 5-years). I hadn’t heard this song for quite a while, so it was curious how it popped into my head during the homeward half of my 13-miler. Why did this track populate my thoughts? Is it the cadence? My current temperament? When and where was the last time I even listened to this song? My strongest memories of this album, are having it cued up in my vehicles 6-disk changer for just about the whole ski season of 2007-ish. Furthermore, I recall cruising the snowy and slippery streets of Steamboat Spring, CO with this album on repeat. Probably not the best idea to mix aggressive music with dangerous driving conditions. Dually noted. Two miles to go, great job. All I am saying without these thoughtless divergences in our training routine, all you’ve got is a routine, these are thoughts that are lost in the digital world.
Don’t worry, I’m not entirely a purist: Some of my most rewarding workouts both physically and mentally have been a result of the vigor of the instructors music selections in spin class. Pick your poison, sometime workouts paced and guided by someone else are exactly what we need.
On another note, as I ran through the wooden underpass of the Boston University Bridge, I was struck by the beauty of a peach-sunset sky highlighting the in foreground the steel railroad bridge, perfectly framing a soft Charles River and Boston cityscape. Man, I wish i had my camera 🙂
What sort of revelations have you experienced during your workouts?