Sometimes writing these posts clarifies my mind. When I wrote about the gym being a fitness factory with an ethos of targets and attainments i.e. being like work, I realised how strongly I believe that treating exercise as an end in itself is wrong. It isn’t. It is a gateway to other deeper, more satisfying pleasures.
I do not run to get fit. I run because it opens my eyes, helps me think more clearly, enhances my sense of self and gives me a feeling of (quite unwarranted) satisfaction. Being fitter helps me run better and is therefore desirable but it is only a part of the experience. The ultimate aim is to unite physicality with imagination (without trying to sound too poncey and pretentious).
A lot of the time this does not happen because either one of the mind, body or surroundings is wrong. But sometimes it all comes together and it makes me feel like a new person (and believe me feeling like a new person is something I really appreciate). Knowing these moments happen keeps me going through the duller times.
Trying to rehabilitate an injury in a gym is one of those duller times and writing about it made me realise that spending too much time thinking about the state of my leg is one of the more futile uses of the brain. The body might be OK with endless indoor rehearsals but the mind will only be satisfied when it is outside, feeling the air, sensing the space, and looking around at the changing landscape. Only outside is there is a chance of rediscovering that feeling of connection, especially at this time of year when things change from day to day. Blossom comes and is then blown away, lambs grow at incredible speed and the trees become full and there are different shades of green.
I am not too bothered about how fast I am running or how far I go. I just happy that I am easing myself back and can bookend this post with two pictures from my last run