What you resist persists - by Nick van der Leek
These days I'm running to lose weight. And for my sanity. But weight is far and away the main priority. All the sitting around behind a desk or steering wheel, behind a monitor or a TV, and let's face it, behind an endless conveyor of breakfast, lunch, dinner and junk food portions adds up. It adds up to a monstrous entity known by an innocuous term: the boep.
When I go out for that run I feel bullied and ridiculed into doing it. Sometimes I'm inspired. That feels better. Racing does that. You run, you exceed your own expectations [I am not as fat, heavy, slow, dead as I imagined I was] and then you begin to believe [hope/imagine] that you're capable of being better. Lots better. That thought provides a new lease on a morning, and potentially, a new lease on life.
But what happens when I go out there, and I'm still heavy and slow. This is hard to endure when you compare it to times when you were lighter, faster and had all your hair flashing wildly - like a demigod - in the wind.
It's easy to run with an inner monologue in your mind, a monologue that longs for something long gone. And that's depressing. Am I trying to run away from myself? So here's an alternative. You are still that person you once were. Yes, with a few spiderwebs in the corners. But potentially, at your best now, with the training you had then, it would be a close contest. Wouldn't it?
The trick is, when you're running, to relax. To embrace the strain. To say: I want to be here, I want to put a strain on my boep, I want my legs to feel tired so they get stronger. Don't resist the feeling, revel in it. Allow yourself to feel the fatigue, and consent to it. Say to yourself: "I choose to be here, and I choose to allow myself to feel this discomfort, so that I can work through this load of fatty adipose that I no longer want." In short, run like you mean it.