One of my favorite things about running is that it is simple. You don’t even have to think. Just one foot in front of the other. One foot in front of the other. All you have to do is take the next step. What a nice parallel to life. Sometimes, you don’t even have to think. Just take the next step. Do the next right thing. Put one foot in front of the other. Repeat as necessary.
It’s amazing how running can shut your mind up. Run hard enough and for a moment, all you feel is your legs on fire, your lungs burning, you are out of breath, your heart might explode out of your chest, and time somehow stands still. There is something so cathartic about that moment. Perhaps something in you needs to scream and there is nowhere safe to just let it out. So your legs will scream for you. Everything hurts and it is a beautiful, if temporary, break from reality. Sometimes life hurts and it’s scary and nothing makes sense.
The nice thing about the pain of pushing your body past where it wants to go is that the pain makes sense. It has a logical explanation. I hurt because I am running faster than I want to run. Life isn’t so simple. The answers aren’t so easy. There aren’t as many logical explanations.
But it ultimately comes down to taking the next step. Doing the next right thing. Even when you feel like you are on fire and everything in you wants to quit. I’ll leave you with two quotes from Rainer Maria Rilke:
“Let everything happen to you
Beauty and terror
Just keep going
No feeling is final”
“Let life happen to you. Believe me: life is in the right, always.”