Mainely Running
Join me as I train in Maine and race all over the world in pursuit of my goal to run a marathon on all 7 continents

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Suffering is Optional

It's interesting doing my yoga teacher training and training for a marathon at the same time. My long runs give me a lot of time to ruminate over what I am learning in yoga training. I'm also realizing just how much the principles of yoga can be applied to everything else in life, but in my case especially to running. 

Yesterday I went to an awesome workshop, "Open Hips Open Heart Open Life." In trying to open up our hips we were holding deep poses for 3-5 minutes. For many of us, myself included, this was not always comfortable. In fact, sometimes was downright painful. But our teacher Larissa encouraged us to work through this, saying "Acknowledge this discomfort as part of the experience, but don't make it the whole experience."

Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional

This morning as my foot started to hurt during my long run this pearl of wisdom came back to me. Normally when something hurts during a run, that is all I can think about. I dwell on how much pain I am in and how I can't wait to stop. But instead today, I thought about what Larissa had said yesterday. I tried not to make this whole run about the pain. I acknowledged that my foot hurt, but not so badly that I was risking injury. And then I moved in. I admired how beautiful the marsh was. It was a calm morning and the tide was high. The water looked like glass. I enjoyed the crunching of the leaves beneath my feet. I listened to my music. 

It really worked. I'll be interested to see if I can keep myself disciplined enough to keep thinking that well during a marathon as compared to a 10 miler. 

How was your weekend run? Did you have any revelations?

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