You have just returned from going for your first run in a month. You really, really did not want to go. You procrastinated by drinking a cup of tea and paying some bills online. You told yourself that you’d spent the day at work and didn’t need to leave the house again for the rest of the day.
As you paid your bills and reflected on what still required payment, the uncomfortable feelings started. Some of this (most of it really) related to The Man-Ho and his stingy reluctance to pay his half of the extracurricular activities your children participate in and enjoy. You began to feel warm anger rise, the pit of your stomach churned with frustration and your thoughts whirled and swirled around your head.
It began to feel overwhelming and into your mind popped the thought “I need to run this off”. You still didn’t really want to do it, but you pulled on your socks and runners anyway and walked out of the door before you could talk yourself out of it.
And so you went for your run. Almost immediately, you realised you’d made the right choice. It felt good to push yourself, to feel your body moving strongly and surely, to have the swirling thoughts drop quickly away and be reduced to the simple awareness of your breath and the sensation of your feet pounding the surface. And when you finished and returned home, your mind felt clear and refreshed and what had seemed overwhelming a short time beforehand was now no longer.
Remember this dear self: running works. It costs nothing but a short period of time; it will leave no hangover or regrets or shame. Keep doing it, even when, especially when, you don’t want to. Pause, give space for and listen to that small, quiet voice within you which knows what it is you need to do-and if it says, ‘run’, then run.