I have been stressed recently, and yesterday it reached a peak. I was even dreading going on my long Sunday run, because I was worrying about everything and thought I’d just be wasting time.
But I summoned the strength to pull on my shoes and head out on an eight mile run, hitting some local trails by a lake (Hempstead Lake State Park, maybe you’ve heard of it). Well, about half a block in I managed a smile. It may not sound like much, but when you’re stressed, it is amazingly hard to force your facial muscles into that position.
And by the end of the first mile, I had completely relaxed. I even worked on some of the things I was stressed about during my run, reaching some conclusions.
I know lots of people run for the sole purpose of relaxation, to ‘get away from it all.’ That’s not why I typically run; I run for self empowerment, for achieving personal goals, and for fun. But occasionally, as I did this Sunday, I will use my run to just relax.
And interestingly, when I wasn’t worrying about my time (or much else, thankfully), I managed a fairly decent pace.