It was around the time I was coming to the mid point of the run where that old feeling came back to me. I say “old” as if it’s been years that I’ve contended with the feeling of giving up on a run. If you know, you know I’m all about staying Fit mentally and physically but I’ll be honest, running is not one of my stronger points. I do it well once I practice and stay at it, but man does it hurt.
Every Saturday I go for a run, it’s a routine of mine that helps me on the weekends. I’ve found running to help me clear my head, boosts my oxygen intake, helps my breathing and it helps with a host of other health and fitness related components. Some Saturdays, like yesterday, I didn’t want to go for my run, and a voice in my head told me that I could skip it today. I said to that voice, that I just can’t give it up today because I’ve worked hard to make a routine of something that I dislike, but that “something” is so good for me in many ways. It’s like taking medication, you hate the taste and the fact that you have to take medicine, but you know deep down that it’s supposed to help you. The difference is that without a doubt, exercise comes with positive side effects when done correctly and in the right amount.
I neared that bend and I began to slow down because I needed to loop round the post and head back the way I came. I felt it, it was hard, my legs weren’t moving so good today, my breathing was a little off, a car passed by to interrupt me and it left an unpleasant scent of gas, dust and old engine in the air I was desperately trying to draw in. I rounded that corner and then took off, I had overcame that feeling once again. Every time i’m beginning my run I tell myself that if I just take the 1st step, if I can just keep going even if it’s slower than usual, I know I can make it…
I looked down at the time and smiled, remembering that I had told myself that today would be a slower day and to just keep running even if I felt like stopping. It’s so demotivating when you’re feeling unfit, you tell yourself you’re not where you need to be, you should be doing better etc. and you look up amidst the voices and see you still have a long way to go and the unpleasant feeling you have now won’t be going away for some time.
Fast forward to the next day, Sunday as I’m sitting, eating a wholesome lunch prepared by my wonderful Aunt; seated, I reflect on my week and the new mental and spiritual journey I’ve embarked upon. It’s funny, I’ve always been on a journey to mastery my “self” but it feels new this time, things are different. As I reflect and look ahead, the road is so long it’s not even funny. Like a freshman in college looking toward senior year, it feels impossible and seems like a long time coming. I’ve learned a lot from my previous journeys and one thing I’ve certainly taken away is the hardest part is the beginning.
Reader, if you’re working toward completing or even beginning a new journey in your life, the only way you’re going to begin is by taking the first step. You are the Master of your own journey, no one can make you begin, no opportunity can present itself that can really push you unless you decide that it has the power to do so. It’s all you…
Like me, you may feel like your metaphoric legs aren’t moving fast enough; you may feel slow, tired, burdened, hard pressed and a host of other feelings, but realize that you don’t have to run to get to where you need to be. You can walk, you can run or you can stroll, but one day when you look back at how many steps you’ve taken, you’ll realize you’ve come a long way since the day you took your first step.
You may or may not remember, but as a child all you ever wanted was to walk and play like everyone else, now if you’re reading and understanding this, it seems like child’s play indeed to go for a walk, but at that time the journey to get to where you are now seemed so long…but you made it, and if you do the same thing, putting one foot in front the other, you’ll make it…
Step for now and walk on later, and one day you’ll be able to run. If you ever get the chance to look back, you’ll notice just how far you went forward. Don’t stop when you begin to breathe heavy, you can slow your pace but remember to keep going; the only way to create that change now is to begin by taking that your first step.
Nick A. Titley