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Dreaming of perfect awareness

19 December, 2009

I wasn’t supposed to run today. That’s to say that I had planned to make this week the same as last week to see how I feel with the volume. But of course it didn’t turn out that way. For one thing, the time trial on Thursday was a kilometre shorter than expected. Secondly, I’ve realized that the volume is an undesirable in-between place, and I may as well use the xmas break from speedwork to turn up the volume, as it were. Also, I’d forgotten that my gym pass expired at the end of last week, so the gym workouts didn’t happen (hey, did someone say it’s xmas?). In any event, I felt a run was necessary, and ended up on the 4.5 mile route around the cemetery .

I was thinking a little more about the collection of data. I am sorely tempted by the gps gadgetry, but at the same time the point of running, in a way, is that really nothing is needed apart from a pair of shoes (and many people now would even dispute that shoes are necessary). The simplicity of it all is a major attraction. This ‘puritan’ in me, the part that just runs for the feeling of freedom, as far and fast as feels right, is always at odds with the egotist in me who just wants to know how fast I can go, to see how near to the front of the pack I can get, and will use all tools available to make that happen. As with anything though, if your grip is a little too tight, you’ll defeat yourself in completely the wrong way — that paradox of relaxing into your best effort.

Ideally, as a runner I would be so sensitive to every signal that my body sends, that I could run as hard (i.e. easy volume, and fast for speedwork) as my body would allow without becoming overtrained. Perhaps that’s what it is to reach the peak of form, an alignment of body and spirit, full awareness of the condition as runner, which even takes account of the mysterious factors (perhaps not mysterious if they’re examined closely) that make the difference between a bad and a good day.

Otherwise, I know that this state of affairs will continue till the day I decide, the day I accept, that my fastest time is in the past. After that, I will run only as an expression of freedom!

One Comment leave one →
  1. 21 December, 2009 3:14 am

    Once I got a gps gadget, I couldn’t run without it. Of course, I do run without it once in a while (mostly when I forget it at home) but these run feel naked and not knowing how far or fast I am going doesn’t feel right…

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