Take a child to an open space and watch what they do. In fact, do the same with a dog. Dogs and children don’t think about injuries or how sweaty they will get, or how tired, or that they might get a stitch. When let loose in an open space, kids and dogs without fail do the same thing. Run.
We’re not talking tame running (called jogging). They go as fast as they possibly can. They don’t even seem to pick a direction, they just go and go at full speed until they can’t. At which point they fall over (kids) or sniff something (dogs). Once they are tired of this, they pick another seemingly random direction, and go full speed again.
If they see something they stop and look at it without concerning themselves with split times and pausing heart rate monitors. If they see a trail that looks interesting, they go down it. Not knowing where it goes does not mean “I’ll look it up on google maps next week and calculate whether my per km pace will get it done within a few split seconds of my allotted time before I have to get back to my schedule.” It means adventure. Discovery. Fun.
When did running become so mundane, so boring. A chore?
Maybe it was in the 70’s when jogging became a craze. Maybe it was when we decided it was too dangerous (or embarrassing) to run outside, so we built a machine for it.
Unleash your inner child. Your inner adventurer. Find a path or fire trail and run down it. Stop when you are tired. Walk when you have to. Start running again when you feel like it. If it is dark: perfect. If it is raining: even better. If there is a puddle in your way, don’t tip toe around it – smash through it. Get muddy – get dirty. Just run, explore, discover.
As you discover nature, you will discover parts of yourself. The parts that have been suppressed by deadlines and targets. The part that makes you dance, sing or fart when you are alone. The part that dreams of having superpowers. The part that skips. The part that pulls faces in the mirror. The part that loves swimming. The part that buys gifts for kids that you actually want to play with.
Let it out. Let it be free. Let YOU be free.
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