Monday, 28 January 2013
Running To Forget
I need to run.
I don’t just mean; “I’d like to run” or “I’m in the mood for a run” I really do mean I “need” to go for a run.
Also when I say “run” again I really do mean “run”. I’m using the word in the way children normally use it. As in “run as fast as you can”. I don’t mean “jog” or the oxymoronic term a “gentle run” - when you were a kid there was never anything “gentle" about a run. Either you were running hard or you weren’t running at all.
So to repeat; I desperately need to go on a hard physical run.
And the reason for this is because? Well today I am stressed, I have a million things to do, life and work feel like they are getting completely on top of me, and my stress levels are off the scale.
Now I’ve read numerous articles about running reducing stress, it is virtually in our folk wisdom that exercise releases endorphins in our body that are good for us and reduces stress. And so when I say I am stressed and I need to run most people think I’m talking about that. Now don’t get me wrong I believe in the whole endorphin argument and running is good for me overall but I’m talking about running releasing stress in a different way. In a way that I have not seen any articles or scientific studies cover:
Running to forget.
When I’m really stressed I need to find a way of not thinking about anything. A way to forget all my problems and blank out all the things I am meant to be do. The same way some people use drugs or alcohol to temporarily block out reality. Running incredibly hard does that for me.
When I run really hard I find exertion levels so high that after about five minutes I can’t concentrate on anything. I have trouble doing simple mental arithmetic (and believe I often try when calculating how much further I have to run) let alone concentrate on the big problems that are stressing me. I challenge anyone to do a hard speed interval session and think about their microsoft outlook to do list while they are doing it.
And so tonight knowing that I have not done my filing, I have not finished the presentation that was due two days ago and I feel I have a myriad of different tasks hanging over me that are spiralling out of control I will run. I will run as if I was getting drunk. I will run as if I was getting high.
I will run and for 60 glorious minutes I will not have a care in the world, and possibly more importantly I will not have a thought in the world either.
The picture today is of me having run to forget. I have just done a heavy treadmill speed session and have not got a care (or thought) in the world.
(The original version of this blog appears on audioboo.fm/thesoundofrunning )