If you know only a few things about me, I am fairly confident that one of those things you are aware of is that I dislike running.
Oh and that I love of bagels…a lot.
But for the sake of this post lets focus on my disdain for running.
Today the sun was shinning bright and the roads were free of ice for the first time in months. Since Wednesday is a day I dedicate entirely to getting in a nice cardio session I decided to go for an interval run around my neighbourhood.
I wanted to be outside and that desire beat out the little voice in my head screaming “Running? are you out of your mother trucking mind?”
Normally I would say, “Yes, very much so”, but this time I am made a wise choice.
I don’t like to run. That is a feeling I have. I don’t like running because it makes me all sweaty, and my chest burns and in general I don’t like that it feels so damn hard.
But despite how I feel about running, I understand that it is good for me.
And that’s important because “feeling” a certain way about something and “understanding” why something is good for you are two things that should remain separate in my opinion.
To prove my point, here is a list of other things I do not feel like doing;
- WearIng pants
- Cleaning my bathroom, or really my entire house for that matter.
- Looking at your vacation photos (we get it Sandra, you had the time of your life in Iceland, but now you’re back in Montreal so get over it and start being miserable with the rest of us)
- Paying bills
- Working (to my clients reading this, I love you all, but I love my bed more. Oh and I have to wear pants when you’re around, yet another strike against you)
- I could keep going but I think we both have other things to do
The point is, there are a lot of things I do not feel like doing, but I do them anyways. I am an adult, feelings sometimes need to be ignore so that I can buck up and do what I got to do!
This applies to dealing with responsibilities, but also and maybe even more importantly, ignoring your feelings and pushing yourself to do something that makes you feel uncomfortable or inconvenienced is exactly what you need to do to grow.
As much as I dislike running, I think it is the physical activity that has taught me the most about myself. Running has taught me to push myself to do something I thought I couldn’t, to challenge myself.
Running has taught me to appreciate the feeling of accomplishment when I do something I once thought impossible.
Running reminds me to get comfortable being uncomfortable.
But mostly, running is my weekly reminder that I need to quit being a whiner and embrace the results of getting through something difficult that I don’t feel like doing but that I know is good for me. In the moments before I start running I redirect my focus from what I ons’t feel like doing to the feeling I will get once I finish.
Running has taught me that we all need discomfort in order to grow.
Too often I think we shy away from uncomfortable situations. But ask yourself what would happen if we embraced that feeling and explored it a little bit further.
What could that action bring us?
Growth is hiding in places we do not care to look.
Why not wander in, instead of running away.
What if you stayed one moment longer when all you wanted to do was leave?
110 lbs ago I never did things I didn’t feel like doing. I never pushed my capabilities passed where I was comfortable. I didn’t eat vegetables, I didn’t drink water, I didn’t exercise, I generally didn’t make an effort to take care of myself. I was comfortable not trying. Now I can say that I have run 5k’s and make exercise and healthy eating a priority. Even when I am short on time and don’t feel like it.
This new and improved me makes an effort everyday to make decisions less based on how I feel in the moment and more as to how I will benefit in the long run.Do I want instant gratification that is vacuous and fleeting? Or do I want a feeling that is abiding and filled with possibilities.
In the end that is the best way to describe the gratification that comes with healthy living, possibilities become apparent. Because if I can do something difficult, despite how I feel about it, then imagine what other things I can do I had never thought possible?
So the questions is which do your prefer?
A donut and a Netflix session?
Or a quick run with physical and mental health benefits?
Thank you all for reading and have a fabulous day!