If you’d read Last Week’s Post, (Thanks!) you’ll know that I intended to make this July a month of introspection and rest. Well here we are after one full week and let me tell you what I’ve learned so far.
First, I was so focused on the idea of “Rest” that I hadn’t really defined for myself what “Rest” was. I know that sounds pretty odd. I mean we all know what rest is, right?
As I went through the week, I found myself in the same routine – Both at the dayjob and at Home. It was so easy to go back to business as usual, and I didn’t feel particularly more rested than I did on June 30th.
So what was I doing wrong? I know that change doesn’t happen all at once, but I didn’t think I’d made any headway even though I’d been getting good sleep, and I’d even scheduled dedicated “Me Time.”
It wasn’t until late in the week, that I realized that I hadn’t much of an idea what “Restful” meant. I hadn’t defined it. Was it physical rest? Mental rest? Something else?
Let me tell you that Yesterday’s 6 mile and some change walk was one of the most restful things I did this week. Yes, you read that right. How can a walk like that be restful? Well, let me back up and say that it wasn’t just a walk. I ran for a bit too, on and off. Maybe, all told, I ran for a mile, and at this point, maybe I could run a mile all in one go. I couldn’t do that at the beginning of the year, and I don’t do it on any of my routes. I live out in the sticks and those back roads rise and fall. As my Dad once said, “Uphills train, but Downhills maim.”
So how was a hybrid 6 mile walk-run even remotely restful?
Because it felt good. There was this spot, maybe 30 minutes (and maybe 2.5 miles in) where I hit a stretch of flat road, under a gorgeous sky, and I took off. Normally, my run is more of a slow jog, because I’m running toward a specific end point at a distance. That was the case here too – a tractor “Driveway” into a field, maybe 100 yards away. I picked up the pace, and kept it up. And it felt good. I didn’t go flat out, this was still a dirt road after all, with the usual compliment of divots and bumps (which I prefer to a freshly graded surface – I always get rocks in my shoes). Still it was good, and it was good to know that I had another gear I could have used.
And it was there, when I came to that entrance (not too far from where a small river passed beneath the road), when I started to get it. I was 100% in the moment. I wasn’t thinking about anything other than putting one foot in front of the other, being mindful of where I put those feet, and the destination. I wasn’t thinking about what I was going to do when I got back to the house, I wasn’t really hearing the audio book I’d been listening to.
I was present, and I think that’s important.
I think that what I was after is a combination of Physical and Mental rest and it shouldn’t be surprising – yet it somehow is – to realize that it’s all connected. Connected but separate. I’m certainly not doing anything physical while I’m composing this post, but I’m enjoying the work. I’ve got some music going, but it’s more of an insulating layer than anything else. I’m here. Not somewhere in the future – or the past. Now I’m not saying that either of those places are bad, and that you shouldn’t spend time planning or reflecting, but you can’t be there all the time.
Be where you are. I don’t know if that’s 100% the answer, but I’m going to see where it takes me this coming week.
Thanks for reading. Be safe out there. Be Excellent to Each other – and yourself.
I’ll see you on Thursday.
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