I’m running outdoors again after a 10-year lay-off. I don’t ever plan to run a marathon, but I’d like to run 3 miles, 4 to 5 times per week, and I finished my first full 3-mile run this past week. My doctor has recommended running as a high-impact, weight-bearing exercise to increase my bone density.

I’ve learned two things about myself now with this new exercise regimen:

1.     I end up in the same place that I start, and,

2.     I’ve been running all my life.

Whether I’m running in my neighborhood or driving to a nearby park, I always start and end in the same spot. It’s interesting that I expend so much energy and sweat to get to nowhere.  In this case, the work I’m doing in increasing my bone density is more important. It’s about the journey and not the destination.

Although I’ve had a 10-year hiatus from outdoor running, emotionally I’ve been running my entire adult life. I’m either trying to avoid my fears, or running towards my next goal. There hasn’t been a lot of downtime.

After just a few weeks, I’ve learned that I need to be just as intentional about my rest time as my running time. I’m scheduling in 30 minutes of rest before my 30-minute runs. My rest time isn’t just a physical rest, but a mental and emotional rest too. No playing on my iphone, or even reading a book. Just thirty minutes of quiet time to just “be,” and then I’m prepared to go out to run.

Are you running in an endless loop? How can you build in time for “rest” in your life, too?



(click below for MP3 file)