Running just to run
The great thing about Asheville is that even though it gets hot during the day, the nights are cool and bring nice crisp mornings.
Sunday was like that here; it ended up in the 90s by the afternoon, but the morning was crisp. I didn’t have plans to go walk or run, but decided that it was a nice morning for it.
After doing my Body Looseners, I headed down to Carrier Park, the loop of flat land around the river. I paid close attention to my “C” Shape and walked down to the park and did one loop around ChiWalking. It felt great to be outdoors, in my body, listening and responding.
I took short strides, lead with my upper body, pumped my arms, and let my hips swing. I noticed I kept holding tension in my feet (plantar fasciitis isn’t totally gone yet), so I kept reminding myself to relax relax relax.
After one nice loop of walking around the park, I decided to see about a slow run. I transitioned from ChiWalking into ChiRunning very slowly, keeping my core engaged, lengthening from my crown and letting my body fall. I wanted to be careful of my knee, and so took very short strides, keeping a visualization of my head that my feet never landed in front of my hips.
I kept a slow pace and did Body Scans over and over again, transitioning from focus to focus as I moved along, depending on what part of my body needed attention. When my shoulders started to sway, I thought of my elbows really going rearward. When my breathing got a little more intense, I practiced Y’Chi. When my knee made a miniature twinge, I reengaged my core and let my pelvis get looser.
At the end of one loop, I transitioned back into ChiWalking and cooked down for a little while. I chose to stretch at the park instead of at home because I get anxious and go to quickly through my stretches when I do them at home. I feel great today, and have two golfballs rolling underneath my feet to keep my feet nice and relaxed and loose.
Here’s to going for a walk or run just for the pure pleasure of it. I realized yesterday that right now, I don’t have an event that I have to train for right now. It’s sort of a strange, liberating feeling. I can just do what I want when I want and can give myself permission to go short or long, easy or hard, with friends or without, with music or without… Hooray!