Runners say “the first mile is always the hardest” and it has taken me almost 3 years to totally get this. Every run starts with a struggle while I am constantly reminding myself that it always gets better. I just need to remember to have no reservations and just “let it be”. Once this happens my breath can be steady and I can explore my edge.
Learning how to “Let it be”:
Four years ago I was introduced to yoga and fell in love with the practice. It calms my mind and continues to teach me to accept things as they come. I have learned what the benefits of a regular meditation practice can do. After every class, I feel so rejuvenated and rested, like my brain just got back from vacation. The ability to ease my mind and act in the moment changes any event I do, most notably a run. It is a feeling I crave after being challenged or tested.
Letting it be:
The first mile (sometime more) is a constantly struggle for me to let go of my reservations. Once smoothed out I can find the “groove” and let my feet do their thing. This is the moment that things just melt away; tension, stresses, thought, reservation all dissolve. At this point I am my most pure raw self. I am me. I am able to exhaust my fears and frustrations to the point where they no longer exist. Running becomes my meditation.
When my mind is free from tension, stress, thought, and reservation my natural instincts are able to come forward and take control. My run is brought back to basics and I can focus on conquering the distance one step at a time. Instead of worrying about the tough day I just had, or how I look in my new shorts, I am able to worry about staying hydrated and taking full lung breaths.
Starting out I am in my head with judgement, worry, or frustration but then finish by racing to the end with my guard down, being the most pure raw form of myself. In this moment I could care less about how I look or where my sweat is showing. All I am aware of is the joy that bleeds through my mind after fighting so hard to excel at our natural human talent; running.