Whenever something hurts, the first thing I want is for that thing to stop hurting. It’s a normal human reaction. But it’s never quite that simple, is it?
Rather than escape the pain and discomfort, running asks you to find a way through it.
Near the end of my first pregnancy, whining my way through a particularly long and uncomfortable yoga class, the instructor said to me, “You’ve got to find a way to find comfort in the pain. It’ll help you here, and it’ll help you through child birth.” These words often come to mind when I’m running, years later.
And it’s not just in running. In life, we’re often in unescapable, uncomfortable situations. All we want to do is escape, but more often than not, the only route is right through the middle of what hurts. And I think running conditions us for that.
So the next time you’re struggling through a hard run, stop trying to escape the discomfort. The minute you accept your situation, and relax, you can use the extra energy to find a way to deal. Instead of wishing it away, find a place of comfort within the pain. Wish instead for the strength to power through.
You can do it. —Aidz