I am consistently and pleasantly surprised at how many things in our daily lives can be learning points when we’re paying attention. Awareness and mindfulness have been excellently enriching learnings and practices of mine this year. Every day becomes an adventure!
Some days are eventful and a bit more adventurous than others, like the Richmond Run/Race day a little over a week ago. What a gorgeous day it was! A bit warm for many runners looking for high performance, but for me, I thought it was perfect.
I like to hold intentions for things like this. To spend months leading up to it in training and then for the event itself, I appreciate holding mental and emotional intention for it. Sometimes that intention is deep and meaningful, and this time, my intentions were to: enjoy it, and to feel good. I wanted to have a good time as well as feel strong and have a good run.
I got all that I had hoped for, and then some! I had a wonderful time enjoying the course and the weather. The half marathon training team coaches cheered on along with all of the spectators, and one jumped in and ran with me a bit in Bryan Park! I felt great throughout the entire run and began to pick up my pace after the halfway mark.
Shortly before mile 11, I did not see this until afterward, but I found a big metal ring with my feet and it sent my flying down to the pavement. Two runners passing by helped me to my feet, I checked out the damage – I took out a lot of skin on my left forearm, making it a bleeding mess, and bummed my left knee pretty good. Once I realized I was fine, the adrenaline carried me to the finish. I felt strong and I went fast! Coming down the finishing chute on 5th street, I could feel the strength in my legs and my core I’d been building in to my training over the past few months.
I finished with “gas in my tank,” sort of speak. I could have run more (that crazy mindset is what got me into marathons 10 years ago ..). I was so pleased that I felt so good and strong, and I was most happy that I accomplished what I set out to – to enjoy it, and to feel good.
Then to find the medical tent to get my cuts and scrapes cleaned up 🤪 That salty sweat did not feel good in my wounds! Ouch! Physically, healing this has been painful over the past few days, but mentally and emotionally, it feels like a badge of honor, a battle wound, if you will. 😂💪🏼
I share all this because while I’ve had my times of racing for time and working to get faster, I truly appreciated the goal of simply enjoying the day, being grateful for what my body could do, and for it feeling good. There’s SO much to be said for that. My main goal is to be healthy – physically, mentally, emotionally, relationally, in every area of my life. I don’t want to wreck my body and I intend to keep my knees and other various joints, bones, muscles, and tendons healthy, giving me many years of enjoying days like this.
How about you? I fully support that running may not be your “thing,” but what is? Even down to daily life activities like getting out of bed in the morning – how’s that feeling for you? Yes, we all are aware that the body can weaken as we get older, but we can do SO much to preserve the youth within our physical beings, as well as the sanity and peace in our minds.