Blah. I hate running. With a passion. I never get the runner’s high. It’s a huge time suck. I do generally feel better AFTER it’s done, but I’ve never been able to figure out if that’s something physical or if I’m just proud of myself for making myself get off the couch. When I was younger, I sucked at pushups and wasn’t great at sit-ups, but running had a decent ROI for me. I didn’t have to work anywhere near as hard as it as push-ups to be better than most of the other Army guys, I was usually in the top 3 or four guys.
Years ago I ran for fear of the PT test. Then as I got older it was a pride thing. As a leader pride dictated that I be better than most of my soldiers. There was always going to be some 18 year old track stud who could take me but as long as I could beat the rest I was happy. I always hated the senior leaders who were fat bodies.
Now that I’m out the Army I don’t have those motivators. You’d think that the whole lung disease thing would be motivator enough but that’s so long term. It’s hard to remember that when the bed feels so cozy or it’s a little windier than normal outside, or raining. And when I do get out there, I can make myself run but I can’t make myself run far. The years of trying and trying and trying and seeing minimal results (as a result of the lung thingie) I just get frustrated. The amount of effort I’m expending these days is so out of proportion to the tiny improvements I get. It’s actually less about improvements now and just working harder and harder to not get worse.
A couple of weeks ago I went running with someone a couple of times. It was almost like running for the Army again. Pride pushed me harder, faster, further than normal. Running with someone kept me distracted to the point where I wasn’t tempted to quit because my brain wasn’t playing games on me. Putting a happy smile on my face as I pushed them. It definitely made a world of difference. And if they’d been training harder and were faster/better than me, that would’ve pushed me equally to not look as pathetic as I felt.
Ugh. I guess I need to get on Craigslist or something and see if I can find someone to run with, or join one of the running clubs. That seems so desperate though.
Years ago I read one of the Tom Clancy novels and there was a line in it to the effect of “If it’s not written down it didn’t happen”.
We had a mandatory time management class at work this week and the instructor said something similar “A goal that isn’t written down is just a wish”. Something about the act of writing it down makes it more concrete, and when you write it down, then you can start writing out steps and a plan to achieve that goal.
I think this blog and some discussions and emails I’ve had with friends have been like that for me emotionally. With my “homework” and with a lot of this growth lately by sharing my thoughts, my desires, my goals I guess, whether in written or spoken form, I’ve made them real and tangible and something I can’t conveniently forget. There’s a higher level of accountability because they’ve achieved that realness.
Conversely, stupid things that used to seem real in my head/heart now look stupid and fake when I write them or talk about them aloud. That act of sharing, of going public is like a magnifying glass or spotlight that amplifies the good and exposes the bad.