No citizen has a right to be an amateur in the matter of physical training. What disgrace it is for a man to grow old without ever seeing the beauty and strength of which his body is capable. -Socrates
I’m really trying to throw myself into running over the past few weeks. It’s always been something I enjoy doing. Nope, that’s a lie. I can remember being at football practice in high school, and wondering what we did to make the coach hate us. We were having to run laps, more than one! And sometimes, we even had to do sprints. I was completely frustrated as to why we were wasting our time pretending to be track athletes when we could be busy hitting eachother.
Of course, then you realize how important conditioning is when you reach the 4th quarter of that game, see the guy across from you sucking wind, and know you have more energy than him. Once football ended after I was out of high school, I struggled to find a way to maintain personal fitness, and decided to pick up running, the one thing I hated most.
And now, like I mentioned earlier, I enjoy it. It’s my personal zen time, like meditating, but way sweatier. I enjoy finding a nice consistent stride, and letting a machine like rhythm come over me. Getting outdoors and taking in the surroundings helps me free my mind of the nonsense that piles up.
Personal fitness has always been something I’ve sort of dabbled with. I’ve always been in decent shape, and can move my big frame around much more nimbly than you would give me credit for, just by looking at me. However, I’ve never been consistent enough. I’ll work out just to the point of experiencing results, and then promptly lose interest, only to let myself get to the point where I need to start working out again.
That is why I’m so intent on making this time be the time. I aim to make it a fully integral part of my life. I always have trouble taking control of my own life. I figure that if I can show the discipline and determination required to get myself into the best shape of my life, then I can carry that over to other aspects of my life. Sure, it’d be super neat to look like Daniel Craig (I’m pretty sure I have the same build, given I can lose some lbs), but I want to know I can push through my comfort zone boundaries and make some strides in personal improvement.
It’s not just the aesthetics that I’m aiming for, either. Like the quote I posted said, it’s disheartening that people are content to live sedentary lives of poor health. You can tidy up around your house all you want, but if you can’t take care of the one place you’ll always call home (your own body), then what’s the point? I don’t want to just look good, I want to feel good. I want to be able to rock climb like a monkey. I want to be able to swim like a fish. I want to be able to run a marathon like a horse. Why wouldn’t someone want to be able to do a handstand pushup? To have control of their body to the point of being able to run around an urban area like it were a schoolyard gym? Parkour is impressive to me, as is gymnastics. The amount of body control those guys exhibit is inspiring.
Socrates makes a good point. I think everyone should fully engage their entire body at least once a day. Whether that is going for a run, working out, or simply getting in a good stretch, every single one of your muscles should be reminded that it’s alive on the daily. Treat your body well, and in turn, it will do wonders for you.
I just ran 7 miles the other day, non stop, at a pretty decent clip. The snow and ice couldn’t slow me down, and I achieved a personal record. Thing is, I even felt like I had more in the tank! For me to run further than I ever have before, and still feel capable of more, is a pretty awesome thing. My body is telling me that it can do more. That it wants to do more. And for once in my life, I’m ready to oblige. 7 miles down. Next up, 23. Marathon status.