Life Lesson from Running
Life Lesson From Running - by Maggie MacGill, Certified ChiRunning/ChiWalking Instructor
I have learned so much about life through running. I think I could write forever on this topic. The mental clarity, emotional peace a physical calm that I gain from my Chi Running® practice is worth every moment of persistent practice. Here are some of the life lessons that spring to mind.
Listen to your body
For me running cranks up the volume on anything that is not quite right or out of balance in my body. The signs come in the form of injury, tension, labored breath or a lack of flow.
I used to push through pain and tension to the point where my body had to ‘shout’ at me in the language of injury so that I would stop the destruction. After years in the injury cycle I finally got it – my body knows best and there is no point pushing through pain and discomfort.
All of my past injuries and setbacks have made me tune into my body on a deeper level. This has opened the gateway to a greater awareness and sensitivity to tension or imbalances in my body.
After years of listening and paying attention I can finally tune into the subtle imbalances and make changes for the better well before I run into an injury.
This attitude of sensitivity and respect for what is, flows into my life and creates more harmony and happiness. My mantra is, “My body is my temple. Running is my spiritual practice.”
Be holistic: you can’t run away from yourself
Everything I do in my life impacts on my running. From the food I eat... to the emotions I feel... to the way I sleep, stand and sit. Throughout the 24 years I have been a runner I have expanded my vision of what it takes to run well. I am now much more attuned to my rest, recovery, nutrition and emotional wellbeing. When I take care of my whole self my running performance skyrockets. I also have a lot more energy and perform better in Life.
Follow your heart: trust what feels right to you
Through running I have learnt to follow my heart and trust what feels right to me. I used to run very differently to the way I did Pilates. Pilates aligned, strengthened and balanced my body, whereas the way I ran kept injuring me. It didn’t feel right and I knew that I had it in me to run with the same grace and ease that I experienced in Pilates and Yoga. I followed my heart and found a better way to run, a way that honoured my natural rhythm and need for flow.
To do this I had to trust my intuition and travel overseas to become a Chi Running® teacher. The results have been exceptional and have reinforced my sense that everything I do in life needs to be in harmony with who I am and what works for me. Following my heart and listening to my intuition are the keys to achieving the flow I’m looking for in my life.