Friday, November 11, 2011
Dedicating a Run
Today was a beautiful day to run. This morning's run included pouring rain, a crisp autumn temperature, and plenty of colourful leaves covering the sidewalks and park trails. It was a perfect morning for a thoughtful 7km run, and a chance to remember those who fought for freedom in my own way. It was 40-somewhat minutes of silence, strategically timed so I could catch the Remembrance Day parade to salute our veterans, and the beginnings of the ceremony here in North Vancouver.
I would have stayed for the whole thing, but was feeling cold, wet, and far from home at this point as my hat and jacket were no longer acting as barriers from the rain. Plus it was difficult to see beyond the sea of umbrellas (and of course, as I was out running, I didn't have one of my own). I thought it was appropriate to leave anyway after removing my hat and singing our national anthem. My thoughts felt so much clearer when I was alone. Today was about remembering those who gave their lives so we could have the freedom to do the things we love - like go for a run carefree. Feeling "cold, wet, and far from home," like I mentioned before, I quietly told myself to suck it up. Those fighting in world wars likely didn't complain about a little rain or cold. They fought hard and gave their lives miles away from their homes and their loved ones. It motivated me to push harder and run faster. And it forced me to remember all the little things I should be grateful for having, such as the ability to go home, dry off, have a hot shower, put on warm socks, and give my love a kiss.
I never run with music; I know some can't go without their iPod but I never take mine with me. For me, it's time for dedicated time with my thoughts, and dedicated time to be away from technology, pop culture, and distractions. Sometimes it's the opposite - dedicated time to NOT think of much at all and break free from the stresses of the day. But for the most part, it's dedicated time to make sense of the world, my experiences within it, and remind myself of things I need reminding of. Perhaps that's one of the reasons why I need to run as often as I do. I need those 4 or 5 lengthy conversations with myself each week, and no, that doesn't make me crazy. It allows me to be more thoughtful, more intentional, and as a result, make better decisions. It certainly doesn't make me perfect, but I think it does help me be a better version of me.
So today's run was dedicated to remembering, being November 11th, Remembrance Day. I can't say that all my runs are dedicated to such important matters. I'll admit that some of the longer runs have also included going over shopping lists and errands that need to get done. But for the most part, I try to put aside the small, mundane details of life and, instead, focus in on bigger picture ideas that are worth spending time on, but life otherwise is too busy to allow that time.
What should my run tomorrow be dedicated to? What do you dedicate your runs to?
Posted by ZAHiDA JAFFER at 7:53 PM