I started running about a year and a half ago, more or less seriously (with some weather-induced breaks), and a little over a week ago I ran the New York City Half Marathon, my fifth race at that distance. It was very cold, and the course was challenging, and my time wasn’t quite as good as I’d hoped. But I was still proud to cross the finish line.
I’ve written about running before from the perspective of learning to work well (like here, at The High Calling), so I was interested to see this piece on “Running as Therapy” in the New York Times this weekend, which discussed running as a component in the author’s mental health after a bad breakup:
When I ran, all I thought about was running: put one foot in front of the other, tackle the mile ahead instead of worrying about the entire distance to be run. I had done a few 5-kilometer races, but this was different. This time I was running five, six miles at a time, building my strength and speed until one cold March day, when I ran 10 full miles from Cape May, N.J., to North Wildwood, falling into my mother’s arms at the end.
As the recession bloomed, I kept running. I tried not to worry about everything going wrong at once — with work and with the house, which was suddenly worth a lot less than what I paid for it. Instead, I ran down one problem at a time.
Running continues to be a balm.