Thursday, January 31, 2013

Janathon 2013 Day 31, the last

Walk - 3.5 miles, 1h 5m. Weather - strong gusty winds, but sky was blue

Janathon has now finished; not with a bang, a grand gesture, a monster run or a hard session, but with a tame walk. But that was OK, I used the time to work some things through, by letting thoughts bubble up (rather than trying to force them). This freeform way of thinking is one of the pleasures of walking and one of the reasons why, as an exercise, it should never be underestimated. Sometimes we place too much value on the volume of sweat shed or the hardness of the task. Slow, steady activity can have great value.

This January, though, has been about more than exercise. Trying to find a Stoic quote for each day has been as challenging as getting out of the door; but I have managed all but two days and surprised myself. When I started it seemed a slightly absurd idea and all I hoped was that I would be able write at least a couple of posts linking practical philosophy to running .In the end I have gone the distance and so will sign off with a quote about the nature of philosophy:
“Philosophy, however, takes as her aim the state of happiness.That is the direction in which she opens routes and guides us. She shows us what are real and what are only apparent evils. She strips men’s minds of empty thinking, bestows a greatness that is solid and administers a check to greatness where it is puffed up and all an empty show; she sees that we are left in no doubt about the difference between what is great and what is bloated. And she imparts a knowledge of the whole of nature, as well as herself. She explains what the gods are, and what they are like.” (Seneca, Letters, XC, 31)
I wouldn’t even attempt to say the same about running!

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