Most runners run not because they want to live longer, but because they want to live life to the fullest. If you’re going to while away the years, it’s far better to live them with clear goals and fully alive then in a fog, and I believe running helps you to do that. Exerting yourself to the fullest within your individual limits: that’s the essence of running, and a metaphor for life — and for me, for writing as whole. I believe many runners would agree. Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional. Say you’re running and you think, ‘Man, this hurts, I can’t take it anymore. The ‘hurt’ part is an unavoidable reality, but whether or not you can stand anymore is up to the runner himself.
― Haruki Murakami, What I Talk when I Talk about Running
When I first started running, I felt very silly, it was when I joined Mapala UI in 2011. I made myself run three times a week— Wednesday and Friday around Campus, Saturday or Sunday around home. I ran outside because I am not into gyms and treadmills. I ran when I was tired, I ran in sweltering heat, in rain, after storms when I was worried about trees falling on my head (my campus has many trees like jungle) Sometimes I ran when I wasn’t feeling the best, when I was hurt, when I was mad mostly at myself, or when I was stressed over because of the school. However, I like running when I was happy as well, with or without friends, same.
What Haruki Murakami says in his book truly represent my feelings toward running. My main motivation for running was initially as a compulsory activity for being a member of Mapala UI. Then I learned that nothing can help me with my goals like persistence, consistency, discipline, and determination, which I always get whenever I run. Running, and the desire to keep running, require you to think about how to solve problems that crop up. And they crop up on a regular basis. The more you run, the more you are used to solve things appear in your everyday life.
Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional
Whenever i have a run, i never say that they are easy. I mostly force myself to continue running, both in each of my exercises, as well as every race I had. Running is not an easy activity, especially when I run more often, the bigger the target i want. Like Murakami says, forcing his body to keep running is a metaphor when he forced himself to continuously write. To me, the discipline i apply when exercising is also applied when living. Running and living are two things which can not be separated.
I have never participated in any running clubs not because I do not want to. I adore running for I can be alone to think. Both body and mind are, again, in conformity, wandering to only places they want.