Running Is Meditation (But Not Really)

by Chris Illuminati
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running path meditation

Meditation. Have you tried meditation?

Do you feel like the world is ending? Try meditation.

Hate your job? Give meditation a try.

Trouble getting an erection? Maybe meditate.

This sounds like I’m making fun of meditation and the billions of people the daily ritual has helped in the last million years.

I’m not making fun of meditation. I’m poking fun at the belief it’s the cure to all strife and that it works for every human.

I’ve tried. Believe me, I’ve made every attempt to incorporate meditating into my daily routine.

I schedule a set time each day, sit in a comfy chair, mute every possible distraction, close my eyes as tightly as possible without giving myself a stress headache, and make every attempt to clear my mind.

Avoiding thought is impossible.

Every article, book, and meditation expert acknowledges this fact and suggests recognizing the thought, giving it a moment, and allowing it to pass.

Making an effort to clear the mind tells every thought in my head there’s an open audition and every cognition a chance in the spotlight.

“Every issue and worry! Front and center! Chris is trying to clear his mind! Now is the perfect time to bring up all those fears about finances, the future, and hey, here’s an idea! Let’s think about death for a couple seconds while we have the floor!”

One of two things happens in the first few minutes of meditation. I get exhausted from entertaining and expelling every thought in my head and just stop trying to clear my mind or I fall asleep.

I’ve checked all the source material. Sleeping, unfortunately, isn’t a form of meditation.

Running is my meditation.

I’m away from most distractions.

I once ran myself out of a panic attack.

Problems are impossible to solve in the middle of a tree-covered trail, so I don’t bother. A resolution might pop into my head, so I make a note and email it to myself.

I focus on breathing. Thoughts come and pass without much contemplation.

Clarity and focus occur with every mile.

Falling asleep is physically impossible.

People often ask what my thoughts were while running. I’m sometimes asked this question not even an hour after a long run.

I make every attempt to recall anything but find it virtually hopeless.

It’s almost like dreaming. Wake up from a vivid dream and every moment replays like a movie.

Attempt to recall the dream an hour later and.. ummm…it happened at a casino.. and my high school Spanish teacher was there, and I think I blew up a bunch of balloons…or maybe it was cupcakes?

Yeah. Definitely cupcakes.

7 | 20 | 19

Miles: 4.56
Time: 41:49
Average Pace: 9:10

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