The Tao of Running

The Tao of Running

The miles are flowing out of me again, seemingly effortlessly; I am always amazed how once a level of fitness has been established there comes with it a feeling of ‘matter of fact’ invincibility; 20 miles on a Sunday, easy, 70 plus miles a week as a norm, easy.

I have an aptitude for mileage it has to be said, and I seem to respond to miles and get faster and fitter and feel better, but then according to Chris McDougal and the Tarahumara we are ‘born to run’ – it is a natural movement and if we did more of it we would be healthier, which is what the running boom over the past 30 years is indicating; healthier in mind and body and our spirit having a freer rein, without the constraints of all that holds us down, the weight of possessions and debts and the need to ‘achieve’. I read a wonderful poem today that was sent to me by my friend Steve who is a runner too, we used to run together in Bath in the 80’s and we are both still running.

It was a poem to the hurrying man – This resonated ‘I have no love for those who rush about its mad business; put their children on the starting line and push…’

Children have much wisdom to impart to us, and they often see the adults far more clearly than the adults see themselves. Perhaps if we listened to them more carefully, instead of pushing them into the ways of society, we would all be able to be more still within and stay in each step and life would be more relaxed and joyful instead of rushed and stressed.

This is the joyous paradox of running – it is all about motion and going forward and start lines, and yet to learn to stay in each step and to be peaceful within that step is the ultimate understanding of the yin and the yang, the stillness within motion, the tao of running.