Tuesday, February 1, 2011

The Runners Mind

Running has been a daily ritual in my life for as long as I can remember.  It started as a way to escape the crowded confines of our small tract home in Southeastern Oklahoma City.  Occasionally, I would lace up my gym shoes and head out the door for a short run to the local woods. Running gave me freedom to explore new environments.

Into my high school years my running took on a competitive tone as I developed into a High School crosscountry and track athlete.  I ran for prizes and awards.  It was my fortune to run with very talented athletes and we more often than not dominated the other schools throughout the state.  We pushed each other to run faster and train harder. 

I continued as a competitive runner well into my adulthood.  After college, I chose to teach and coach the sports I loved so much.  Soon, my life was completely tied up in running or coaching others.  I studied techniques, training programs and nutrition from master coaches and trainers.  Eventually, I became the coach and teacher I wanted to be.

As I moved into my senior years, I retired as a coach and a competitive runner.  I had lost my desire to enter weekend races and marathons. My 60-80 mile running weeks continued through habit more than anything.  Each morning I would lace up the shoes, set my watch and head out the door on a planned run. 

Now running has evolved for me into a way of life.  I don't plan a run nor do I wear a watch.  Each daily run is for the pleasure of the run, that's all. I have found myself becoming a more pleasant person by evolving into a real runner. I now run for the joy of running.  Returning to the purity of the run.  

Running is easier and I run further than ever, having completed many ultradistance runs. This blog has been established to share the Zen of Running. Running for the purity of the heart, soul and being.  Feel free to follow the run through my mind as I continue my daily journey through life.