Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Run Commute--running my way to salvation

I decided to run home from work last night. I was excited about it all day. Maybe the antidepressants are kicking in, or maybe I was just feeling better about getting back to training but who cares?

By the way, I'm not going to get into a long drawn-out argument to fight the stigma of antidepressants but they do help some people, especially those with a chemical imbalance. And I would much rather put something into my body that's been through the rigors of clinical trials and FDA approval than something unproven and anecdotal....like herbal remedies. I guess I'm too much of a scientist. Okay, enough of my two cents.

At 5:00, I changed into my running clothes and began the 10+ mile run home. As the miles ticked by, I felt oddly calm and at ease. Something I hadn't felt for a month. Peace. My mind was quiet and blank. No thoughts plagued me. I was a soft oberserver, watching the universe unfold before me, living in the moment. I savored the fleeting moment of flight between each footstep that felt eerily like floating, then sought to repeat the sensation, over and over. Like an infant being rocked to sleep, my footsteps were a lullaby to my troubled mind. I smiled at the other runners, walkers and cyclists around me. They all eagerly smiled back, as if we all knew the secret we shared. I watched the line of cars, crawling on the freeway. Even though it would take me longer to get home on foot than by car today, time would elapse in the blink of an eye. I drank in the waves rolling onto the beach, softly crashing into white foam like soap bubbles. I watched the sunset surfers riding the final waves to shore before darkness consumed them.

My toes began to blister. Sharp pain stabbed my feet, reminding me of the blood blister on the bottom of my big toe from running barefoot in the sand the week before. I ignored the physical pain easily. A small price to pay to be free from the inner turmoil that had been churning within. After mile 7, my body began to protest. Afterall, my longest run for the last month had been 4 miles. I kept pushing. My hips began to lock up, shortening my stride considerably. I kept pushing through. The pain didn't bother me. The slower pace my legs were reduced to didn't bother me. As long as I could keep moving forward. At mile 9, I thought I was going to die. Luckily, I could see the bridge leading towards home. Not much longer.

And then, I had made it. I hobbled towards the house. My body was not happy but my mind was free and my soul was blissful. As I sank into my ice bath upstairs, I smiled. I'm thankful my body could withstand the punishment I needed to feel happy. Time to get back into shape!


Wes said...

Some sharp stabbing pains are totally worth it... :-)

Steph said...

Awesome job! Way to make your body your bitch, haha. Like you didn't already do that with IM Canada! Great job out there by the way, I never got to post a congrats I don't think. I can't believe that you did so well with all of the IBS problems going on! Simply amazing.

I hope you continue to move forward and start feeling better!

bunnygirl said...

There's just nothing like the bliss of being out there, in the moment, nothing to think about but putting one foot in front of the other. Even when it hurts, it's a vacation from monkey-mind, and that makes it wonderful.

Backpacker said...

Hopefully your doc already mentioned this, but DO NOT stop taking those meds suddenly because you feel better and don't think you need them any more. Done it and seriously the worst depression of my life-scary. You're smart to deal with your depression. Anyone who says you shouldn't take medication for depression has never been depressed (and that's your broad generalization of the day).

Jack said...

Nothing more freeing for the mind then some fresh air. Good job!

Tri Buddha said...

Good on you!!! Way to get back out there.