When fatigue becomes pleasure: running goes from being a sacrifice to being preferable to doing nothing.
Listen to your body: it is possible to understand that the body is asking to move and find pleasure in physical activity.
The voice of the body: when running becomes automatic, you can clearly hear the voice of the body asking to run.
Once I would have answered the question “Do you really like running?” with a “No, but it’s good for me. Let’s say it’s a sacrifice I make for the benefit it gives me.” Not anymore: today-after years of running and after the fear that it would become unbearably boring-I can honestly say, “I much prefer it to sitting or doing nothing.”
How could fatigue (and sometimes even suffering) become pleasure? How did it happen that at some point the sides were reversed? I don’t like lounging anymore? Oh my God, what a monster I have become!
When running is no longer (just) fatigue
There is no denying that in the beginning we need to make an effort to do something we have not done for a long time or have never done. Running is a normal activity for a child, at least as normal as the exact opposite is for an adult, which is sitting, working sitting, watching TV sitting, eating sitting. In short, the posture is clear.
Beyond a certain age the main activity is sitting. Or at least “doing something” but sitting.
It happens because the activities you perform during the day require it or can be performed while sitting, and then the body is also asking you to do it: after all, sitting and entrusting a chair with the task that would be the legs is not so bad.
There is an important detail in what has been said, and it is the body: in fact, it is always the body that tells us that the condition of sitting is the one it seeks, it is the one in which it feels comfortable.
Hard to beat it, isn’t it? Eventually it becomes the norm, to the point where walking or running seem like strange things, activities that an adult doesn’t do because-why doesn’t he do them anymore? Because the body doesn’t want to do them, simple as that.
The problem is bigger, however, and lies in our relationship with the body, and that is: do we really know how to listen to it?
I venture this hypothesis: many people who started running did so because their bodies asked them to, although they may not have realized it.
For example: can you remember the first time you decided to run? It is difficult to engage in such an activity because someone (like the doctor) orders you to do it, whereas it is more likely that it is our own will that makes us do it. Yet it, too, responded to a question coming from somewhere, perhaps simply from the body saying, “Move me, please.”
Listening to the body means turning down the volume to the brain
That time happened by accident, let’s face it. We heard a little voice and decided to listen to it. We usually listen to something else, like our mind. Almost always, in fact. We are immersed in it all day long and at night we attend it as a Netflix version, namely through the more or less delusional dreams it proposes.
its voice is powerful, continuous, incessant. The body struggles to be heard and to tell us that sitting, for it, is not normal. It feels like walking, running, being outdoors.
One day, in short, by chance or luck, we paid attention to it and took it for a run.
At first we compensated with the results we were seeing from the effort of running: the weight dropping, the stamina improving, the whole range of positive reinforcements that running gives you.
Then we thought that to keep doing it – to run, to struggle running – was a bit boring. Not everyone necessarily goes through this phase, but it is possible and it is the one during which many people quit because the results become harder to achieve and because there is not much satisfaction left. One can only see the effort silhouetted against a background of boredom. Oh God, it’s not automatic, let’s say it can happen.
Something magical happens after that: when running becomes automatic, when we stop thinking about it and just do it, we hear the voice of the body again, very distinctly. This is no accident: the mind has quieted down and the voice of the body is finally heard clearly. It says what it has been telling us since childhood, and that is, “Shall we go out for a run?”
Not everyone necessarily gets there, for many it remains an unknown dimension and yet, trust me, it exists: it is perfectly normal that one day, if it hasn’t already happened to you, you will prefer to run instead of being swallowed by the couch. One day it will happen that sitting will almost bother you.
And it will happen only because you have listened to your body’s voice. At first very weak, now peremptory: it just says, “I want to run.” And then you run.