Soul Places

Befriending the Soul through Inquiry and Creativity

Tag: running

Seaweed Forest and Flying

The forest's version of seaweed. Copyright Diane Ludeking 2012

I’ve been running past this cluster of wooden things several times a week for the last month.  Today I finally stopped to take a picture.  And twenty more throughout my run.  So much for keeping my heart rate up, but I knew this day would come.  The day when I could no longer just pass these things by without capturing them more permanently.  And considering the way my mind tweaks things with its vapid recall, I also knew my imagination would distort the heck out of these.  But don’t they look like the forest’s version of seaweed?  The way they wave without moving?  The way they beg me to swim through them instead of run around them?

I confess, my inner child is on the move these days.  And why not let her play?  These beautiful cool spring days exist for a limited time.  Before long the bugs will drive me wild, causing flailing and cursing at the air around me as I also try to maintain my awesome barefoot running form.  An occasional slap of my flesh will reveal my own blood drawn from a mosquito I’ve now killed.  But until then, let the child free!

Copyright Diane Ludeking 2012

Today she is grateful for her freedom but also takes time to encourage contemplation of the punitive action parents take when they ground their kids.  I don’t have kids and have never been grounded, but is it meant to be like a pilot without wings – grounded?  I don’t know if that’s where it came from, but it sure sounds about right.  I’ve seen the face of a child being grounded and it looked a lot like the wind had been taken out from under his wings.  Grounded.

If you were ever grounded as a child, make time today to fly and dedicate it to the child within you.  Running makes me feel like I’m flying.  So does horseback riding.  What makes you feel like you are flying?  Will you do it today?  I am interested in knowing what makes you fly – please share it in the comments.

Your Karma is in the Refrigerator

“Your karma is in the refrigerator.”  Donald Altman, Art of the Inner Meal

I came across this quote yesterday and realized it was the perfect antidote to what’s been on my mind the most these days:

My relationship with food.

I had considered myself a runner up until a few months ago.  A series of minor injuries had put me on the sidelines off and on over the last few years, but three months ago I finally gave up the idea when the injuries became more frequent and debilitating.  Frustrated, distraught and unable to release my anxiety about my body, I consoled myself with almond M&Ms and ice cream.  Yeah, instead of being more mindful about what I ate since I wasn’t running anymore, I did the complete opposite and engorged my self-pity with a bag or pint at a time.  Sometimes everyday for a week or more.

It came as no surprise – well, I feigned surprise – when my fat jeans no longer buttoned.

Forced to take inventory of my current state, I admitted to several unhealthy agreements that delivered me here.  I picked what I thought was the most important one, I ran so that I didn’t have to watch what I ate, and began a different kind of workout.  I did enjoy the high of running as well as the challenge of making it up that hill without stopping, but the healthy reasons for running had obviously become over run with my desire to eat whatever I wanted.  I thought I somehow deserved the treats for my suffering while not facing the real underlying message of I deserve an earlier grave.

My current workout is walking three miles, out in nature whenever possible, as I heal my body and my relationship to food.  I found it so time consuming to walk that distance when I used to be able to run it in less than thirty minutes.  Again, what is my agreement here?  Am I not worth the time to do it right, to find that healthy balance and longevity?  Now, I do my best to eat only when I’m hungry, stop when I’m satiated and break my fast with a green smoothie or fruit, yogurt and granola.  I seek out what my body really needs, no longer falling for the illusion of what I think it would like.  I listen, then I act – the pause in between has made all the difference.