What Running Has Taught Me
My all time most viewed post is not any of my photography or about any travel I’ve done, it remains a post that, if I remember correctly, I wrote up in like 20 minutes. It’s this post: Why I Run
While rereading it, it got me to thinking; Running has now saved me for a second time. I wrote then why I run. Today, I think I shall share some things running has taught me. Could I have learned these things without running? Yes, but there is no greater metaphor for life than running. Just ask any runner…
After all, don’t we teach what we need to learn?
Running teaches us to let go, to leave it behind, and to keep going.
“We cannot receive until we let go of expectations and actions.” Letting go of expectations and actions has been the hardest of all things to let go of, but one day out on the running trail, it dawned on me the only expectation and action I truly needed to have was to put one foot in front of the other, and all else was beyond my control. One foot in front of the other. That’s it.
Even though sometimes letting go sucks. It sucks even when we are opening up and feeling the release, feeling the freedom. We can’t help it, we like our old habits, we cling to our beliefs, and we hesitate to let go of the people who no longer serve us. Sometimes letting go is not a beautiful flowing picture. Sometimes letting go is ugly. Just as sometimes running is ugly. But it’s the end result, the leaving behind of one’s sweat, and tears, and old beliefs and feelings… that make us lace up yet another day and enable us to let it go and to keep going.
Running teaches us we can not run from our feelings. “When we run from our feelings, they follow us. Everywhere.” And that sometimes not everything will be okay. Running teaches us to deal face-to-face, with anything – even the not okay things. But most importantly it teaches us to deal with anything and everything on our terms. Running teaches us that we will be okay even if things are not okay.
Running lets us drop the baggage. Lets us shed what we are not and it allows us to shine as we truly are. Running allows us to expose our most inner fears and vulnerabilities and at the same time it shines a bright bright light on our inner strength and makes us believe that anything is possible.
And as I said in my Why I Run post; I run because running doesn’t allow me to quit – in any aspect of my life.
All photography by yours truly taken in The South of France 2013