I read lots of articles daily about running, as I am a person who has sole focus when I commit to a thing. Articles about hill training, or long runs, or pacing, strength training, about doping, and all sorts of other things that make up our wonderful sport. But few on what happens when you really commit yourself to a training plan and a desire to excel in a field. What happens when your training plan no longer allows you to just show up and run with your local running group because you have an important workout the day that they all meet, and the usual 5-6 mile jaunt through the woods isn’t what’s on your plan for the day? Want the real world truth?
Solitude is what happens. If its an LSD it can be hours alone with your thoughts. Perhaps if its a speed workout you’re brain is too occupied trying to remember how many laps you have done in the mile repeat, and then how many mile repeats you have just completed, oh… and don’t forget keeping an eye on that pace/split you are supposed to hit. In reality those brain occupying, pain inducing workouts are becoming somewhat of a relief to my over-thinking solitary brain.
Do I miss my social running buddies, yes. Do I feel guilty when I show up at coffee or a morning run on a rare day that I don’t have an important workout and I am greeted with “where have you been,” “you do still exist”–of course. Do I wish I could be everywhere and have everything– don’t we all? Instead I have traded in my early morning social runs (so I am not a night time zombie and can actually have a conversation with my husband) for mid morning runs–or even sometimes sneaking in an after work run. I have prioritized getting adequate sleep, and recovery (and of course work and family.) And yes, I miss you all!
Do I regret this? Not really. I’m not driven by overstretching myself and trying to squeeze everything in. I don’t feel compelled to give into the societal pressure that tells me I need to do everything, please everyone. I realize I cant. When I’m all in- I’m all in. I’m a person that when I choose to focus on something important to me I am able to let go of regrets. I realize that most of my life is a consequence of choices I make, and the rest I can’t control–so what is there to regret?
I thrive on single minded-ness. When I have a few things on my plate that I put as much of myself into that I can. And I do. Spreading myself thin doesn’t make me satisfied. I don’t want to be a jack of all trades, I want to be a master of few things that are important to me. So right now running, running fast, and uninjured is my free time desire so my single minded-ness has altered my journey onto a path of solitude — for the moment.