Veronique Darwin

Not sure I want to run/I love running

In Thoughts on Writing on March 5, 2013 at 11:19 am

Running hurts my knees. It leaves a wheeze in the back (and front) of my throat. It makes me give up, often. After a run, I’ve probably given up double my quota of times I should be giving up on anything in a day. I’ll run to that lamppost – no, I’m going to stop here, a meter from that lamppost.

I always sign up for runs, thinking it will make me run. Why do we do these group runs, when none of us really want to run? Running is to get away from something. I understand that if we’re in a big group crossing a start line we want to get away from one another so we run faster, but why do we meet here in the first place?

I got new headphones for my running. I thought this would help me run. They block out noise so I’m more afraid of running, paranoid of being near the edge of a street and darting out in to it with a spurt of energy. I shouldn’t be afraid of that (it doesn’t happen). I should be more afraid of running near a street at all, with how likely I am to simply buckle over on to it.

running1

(from hercampus.com)

Anything that isn’t reading something or writing something or spending time with people I like feels like wasted time to me. I don’t know what to do about that except feed the beast. Going for a run will only happen if I have something to think about (which could be time okay spent) and if I have music to listen to (check, I listened to music today, something got done). Other than that, I’m trudging myself through quicksand. I even got new shoes that don’t make me feel like I have vices for knees. I still don’t want to run.

I am someone who has thought for so long that the sound of my voice complaining is  funny that this is my go-to coping strategy for running. I think I need to reimagine this. I’ve at least once before had the experience that if you say something positive instead of negative you actually change your opinion on the matter. It’s cognitive dissonance theory; it’s stop being an asshole theory.

So I changed the name of the post and I’m going for a run. I’m not going to update this blog after the run because we all know it’s going to be a horrible run. I will be out of the house for fifteen minutes. I will return with a headache and a lifelong smoker wheeze. I might not even go for the run at all. I might go straight into the shower.

The bright side is I have something to think about on the run. I submitted a first chapter to my writing group yesterday. I say “a first chapter” because it’s only the latest version of a series of first chapters I have created for my already written novel. This, of course, is the best version yet, or at least I have to believe this to live on. I now have to reinvent a second chapter that fits the first, and still leads me where I want to go with my novel.

I will hate myself for being on a run when I think of the magic formula, because I’ll have nowhere to write my ideas down. I’ll also be wearing noise-cancelling headphones that won’t let me hear any ideas other than my scraggly breathing, and I’ll be on a run.

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