Loosen, Walk, Run, Walk, Stretch
I went down to Carrier Park again yesterday morning early when it was still cool.
Doing the Body Looseners and a bit of ChiWalking before and after running is going to save me, I believe. Patience is certainly not one of my highest strengths, and by doing the Looseners and stretches and walking before and after running, it’s forcing me to take things a bit more slowly and in manageable bits.
I think this process is good because as Danny often says, getting your brain to really focus for steady periods of time is hard — your mind wants to wander! So if I can really practice focusing for the entire run (by starting with shorter times and distances), then it will get easier over time to focus for longer periods of time.
We talk about refocusing in the Beginner Marathon Training Program (and in the Intermediate, due out next month). This idea of focusing and refocusing is so imperative to all of us… not only when we’re running but when we’re doing anything in life. What’s so exciting, though, is that as runners and walkers, we can practice refocusing while we’re exercising (doing something we love) and then it starts to become 2nd nature and you can refocus more easily on anything in other veins of life.
So if I loosen, walk, run, walk and stretch, in that order each time I go out for a run, the entire process turns into a series of events when I must refocus, over and over again. If I apply this same reasoning to the rest of my life, say for example, my morning when I arrive at the office, perhaps I could use the same idea of refocusing:
Check email, get tea ready, respond to 5 emails, return phone calls, rebrew tea, walk around the office for 5 minutes, check email, prepare for meeting…
I think the most important thing about the practice of refocusing is that you make a choice about what you need to focus on (during your day, your run, your vacation, etc.) and have an implicit understanding with yourself that while there may be temporary distractions, going back to focusing on “this list” is the most important thing…
So, on that note, I am off to brew some tea.