For one reason or another (or 17 others), my training for the Boston marathon hasn’t really taken off. My relationship with running has been on the rocks for some time, and it’s hard to find motivation to put precious time and energy into something that I hardly enjoy right now. However, the occasional good run does make its way into my life every once in a (great) while. I recently had one of those runs.
I decided to do a “long” run on the trails instead of the road because I wanted to run while the sun was up but not with traffic. I set out with no specific time, distance, or pace goals, which meant I was just running with no other reason than to run. The forest is phenomenally effective for clearing my mind. I was overwhelmed by nature, swept up in solitude, and generally disoriented and left with no tangible way to track my progress (as long as I avoided looking at my Garmin). All this happened in the best way possible to the effect that I felt pure freedom and singular presence. Nothing mattered. Whether I decided to go left or right at a fork in the trail, whether I knew where the trails would take me, or whether life and responsibilities even existed outside of exactly what I was doing at that moment. I don’t often feel I can escape the clutches of time, but in that moment everything felt sublime.