Running is simple. Heck, toddlers learn to stand on their own two feet, walk and then take off so you then spend all of your “free” time chasing them around. Kids run around carefree on the playground, counting nothing but smiles. So, if a little human can learn to run and keep running throughout the years [for FUN!], why is this so hard for the big humans [you know, the ones classified as adults..]?
I’ll tell you why – we add pressure and expectationS.
We become obsessed with pace, and that prized piece of technology strapped to our wrist, and counting our miles, and tracking others miles [and, comparing ourselves to the others’ miles], and making sure we have Square World worthy photos, and the best shoes and trendiest clothes, and the endlessly repeated running routes, and, the perfect bounce to our ponytails.
And….and…and, do I need to continue on?
I bet you get it. You do it. I do it. We add pressure. And, a lot of it.
Running: to go quickly by moving the legs more rapidly than at a walk and in such a manner that for an instant in each step all or both feet are off the ground.
At it’s core, running is really pretty simple. Anyone should be able to do it. And, in reality all we really need is a good pair of running shoes and the clothes that keep us covered from the elements.
Take a deep breath. We CAN simplify running [if we want to]. Not every run, but some runs. Because you know what, you need to remember how to run simply.
I challenge you [are you up for it?]:
Leave all technology behind! The GPS watch, the pace setters, the heart rate monitors, the phones that do it all. Leave all of these prized possessions at home. Why? Because you need to know and feel and breathe what it is like to just run. How many times do you look down at your watch on any given run to verify what pace you are at? I bet you were almost spot on when you checked the pace too. If you have been running for a while your body knows your pace. It knows your goal pace and your comfortable pace, and your I don’t know how long I can maintain this pace. Check your imaginary watch – that’s okay – I do it too, but please, pretty please – at some point just run.
To remember this, believe it and accept. Every run is not perfect. Despite all those perfect runs in the Square World, I hate to break it to you — beautiful views, glistening sun, composed runners – this is never going to happen every day. We all have bad runs, we all have days that we drag ourselves through it, we all have days that our bodies just won’t cooperate. So what? Bad days are inevitable. Write them off, learn and move on.
Pick a new running route and don’t worry about what you are wearing SO much. [Worry a little, because this part is semi-important]. If it’s going to be cold, bring your hat and mittens. If it is going to be hot, wear your sunscreen and bring hydration. But, while we all love our favorite Lulu, Athleta and Oiselle [you name the new workout gear – we want it], we don’t need it for a successful run. And, if we choose to explore something new – we won’t make or break or weekly miles.
So, why and when did we start complicating something as simple as running? It was probably the point that we started complicating life and forgetting that running is fun. But, that doesn’t really matter. The thing we need to ask is this — are we ever really going to change it..? Well, probably not entirely [brutal honesty always wins]. But, if we can have one UNcomplicated run a week, I’d say we are really on to something.