Friday, May 9, 2014

Hot Running is Not Nearly as Fun as Hot Yoga

I went for a hot, muggy run this morning.  As I started out, I thought it's 5 AM there is no way the air can already be this muggy. But, yes, it was.  With every breath I took, I felt like I was gulping a gallon of water into my lungs.  Painful and not fun.  I did 2.00 miles, but in 27 minutes 14 seconds, because I kept stopping to walk.  Now I remember why I stopped running last summer, oh, besides the stress fracture.

Speaking of injuries, my leg is about 50,000 times better.  And my hip.  I've been working out five times a week, and I've been doing weights, and I think I finally developed the strength in the muscles to work out the pain in both places. 

With my hip, I couldn't even do criss-cross apple sauce for about three months, but I diligently did some exercises I found online and I did the hip abductor and abduction machine at the gym.  Totally fixed the problem.

I love exercise.  Seriously, what better thing can you do for your body and your mind?  I always find when I start exercising my mood increases. I'm nicer.  I'm less stressed. 

And speaking of less stress, I'm reading an excellent book for my book club right now: 10% Happier: How I Tamed the Voice in My Head, Reduced Stress Without Losing My Edge, and Found Self-Help That Actually Works--A True Story.  Forgive the long title, but seriously, this is what the book is all about.  Dan Harris, a correspondent for ABC news, went on a little journey of self-discovery in this book which is autobiographical, but also teaches you how to manage the negative thoughts in your head.  The first page, he says "I initially wanted to call this book The Voice in My Head Is an Asshole."  How many people can relate to their inner asshole? 

Seriously, when I run my voice is such a jerk.  The voice in my head tells me I can't do it, it' too hot, I don't want to go any further.  Am I the only one who has the voice of a four year old whiny child?  It's as if we grow up, but the voices in our head stay small immature children.  They're narcissistic, selfish, one sided voices, who usually seem hell bent on destroying every aspiration you have.  I'm not huge into self-help, and so I really didn't think I would like this book, but Harris finds peace through meditation and being mindful of his thoughts without being obsessive.  I think that's something we could all stand to do.  Be mindful of our thoughts, be mindful of our reactions to others, and be mindful that we never ever know what someone else is feeling, thinking, or how they might react.  After all, they probably have an asshole in their head dictating their life too. 

So today when I was running, and the voice would tell me to stop running, I kept running.  I told the voice, "Ok--that's a nice thought, but I'm going to at least run to that stop sign before I fall over wheezing and die."  I fought against the voice, and I was mindful those thoughts were there, but I didn't let myself associate with the thoughts.  Hard to do for someone like me who is constantly living in their head!  But a good exercise in controlling myself and using the power of mindfulness!


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