It was mile 283…and I was sulking in the pain cave.
The tendons around my knee caps were completely trashed. It was as if a tiny tornado had ripped them apart. And each step flayed them further from the cartilage.
I couldn’t take the suffering any longer. So I sat down on a bench that ran parallel to the course.
Was this what the halfway point of a 10 Day Race was supposed to feel like?
If it was. I was one wheel down with the axle dragging.
Sensing my grief, Ashprihanal Aalto, the race leader and the world’s best multiday long distance runner…
Sat down next to me, fished his pocket for a piece of paper and began to read out loud:
“Make yourself feel that you are not the runner, but that somebody else is running in and through you. You are only the witness, the spectator.”
When I asked if he had written the words. He said no. It was from Sri Chinmoy. The Indian spiritual teacher who the race paid homage to.
Aalto added that even though adversity feels like it will never end…
It is only temporary.
And when we focus on giving our best. We become lightning rods for transcendence.
We shared a fist and Aalto disappeared into the distance.
I pondered the experience for a few minutes. Got up. And started a slow shuffle. Dwelling on being the witness for the ride my body was taking.
Moral of the story:
If you’re in a running rut. There’s tremendous power in getting back on the horse. Even if you feel directionless and defeated.
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