For as long as I can remember, running has been a huge part of my life. I was either watching my Dad lace up his Nike tennis shoes for a morning run or I was gearing up for my next cross country race. My first "race" was in my hometown and it was called the "Best Dam Race in Georgia" simply because we ran across the dam in LaGrange. Of course I giggled because of the name and had no idea that this was the beginning of a life long love affair.
Running has been a stress reliever, a way to take care of my body, an avenue to lose baby weight, and most importantly, a spiritual journey. I have not always thought about running mindfully, but the more and more I hone my own mindfulness practice, I have realized that running in itself is a way to slow down and become more mindful of my thoughts.
My husband and I also share a love for running. While we don't often run together (he is very tall and his slow pace is my fast one), we often share an unspoken love for something so rich. He recently completed his 4th ultra trail marathon - but his first 50 miler. I was so proud to see him complete such a physical and mental challenge. He finds his spiritual blessings within his runs and that is what keeps him (and myself) coming back for more and more.
At the end of the day, running is not about hitting a personal record during a race or running faster each mile, it's simply a way for me to connect to myself, listen to my body, and hear what my mind is telling me.