On exercising mindfully

I ran in the pouring rain this morning. It was the best run I’ve had in a long time. Well, the best run in Sacramento. I’ve been doing a trail running course through Fleet Feet to prepare for a 10-mile trail run in mid-May. I’m loving the trail runs. Street runs, not so much.

This morning was different. I had no expectations. The rain was pouring down. It was still somewhat dark out. Running was on my training schedule. And–most importantly–I wanted to run. My good friend Christine, at Mamasattva talks about bliss workouts. More specifically, only choosing the exercise on any particular day that feels right. For example, if you’re suppose to run, but you’ve woken up with really sore legs or hip, swim or do yoga instead.

I realize that this is hard if  you’re training for something specific. Especially a longer-distance race. But even then, you can still take the time to identify how your body is feeling and respond in some way. Perhaps play with your form a bit while running or cycling, or add some restorative yoga poses to your post-workout stretching.

Anyway, back to my run this morning. I had a smile on my face for most of the run. It felt good. I was happy. Despite leaving 15 minutes later than planned because the children had been up since 4:30am and 5:45am. Despite running a mile less than planned because the breadwinner had to leave for work early today. Despite the pouring rain that had me soaked in the first 10 minutes. I accepted my conditions and moved forward.

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