The Spiritual & Physical Gift of Your Running Pace

I love running. It’s my favorite exercise. I started running when I was 16, and 170 plus pounds. If I had to go anywhere within a 10 mile radius, and I knew I could carry the things that I purchased home, I’d foot it. I found running to be some what of a “moving meditation.” It was just me talking to me, me thinking, me praying, me focusing on my breath, and me focusing on each and every step. I wasn’t fast when I first started running. I wouldn’t even call myself fast today, unless I intentionally sprint. In fact when I started my running regimen I had to work through all types of complications. If it wasn’t the wrong sneakers, it was the extra weight aggravating my joints. If it wasn’t my joints it was the scraps of my sports bra bruising my chest and shoulders because of the friction. I didn’t stop running though. I continued, and made adjustments along the way, because I had a goal. Some days I would walk instead of run. Sometimes I would walk and run. I’d trot; and on those really good days I would run like the wind.

A running regimen is reminiscent of the ebb and flow of life. We have really, really, good days. We have okay days. We have those days when all we can do is put one foot in front of the other, and on some days we may feel the need to take several breaks in between, and it may seem like we didn’t cover any ground at all. Progress is always being made just as long as we continue to move forward. I lost 40 plus pounds on a running regimen alone…and a healthy diet of course. Once I lost the weight my running pace became faster, and easier. My sports bras no longer bruise me, my joints feel fine, and my breathing is almost like song. It’s strong and steady. Praise God! Today I can afford to be flexible regarding my running pace because I know what works for me and my body. I know that 60 minutes running at my personal pace will burn 700 plus calories and I’ll maintain my weight. However, if I want to change my weight or the shape of my body I know I need to step on the gas!

If we can think of life as running regimen or a marathon then we can comprehend that although there may be other runners next to us on the treadmill, or on the street, the marathon of life is really about us. It’s about how far we can go. It’s about how many steps we can take toward our goal. It’s about finding the right fit (shoes AND sports bra) that is comfortable for us. It’s about knowing that when we decide that we want anything on our personal journery, i.e. our marathon, all we have to do is change our pace or change our path—speed it up—slow it down—keep going left—or bust a right. It’s your journey, so perfect your stride while you run the race, and stay focused on your personal pace.

As always, every runner should take time to care for themselves, and experienced runners know this!Nurture your inner spirit My memoir Before You Work Out, Exercise might help, http://bookstore.iuniverse.com/Products/SKU-000141255/Before-You-Work-Out-Exercise.aspx. Care for your physical body as well. Do you foam roll? Every runner should! For more on foam rolling follow this link:https://nadirahashakir.wordpress.com/2013/11/16/the-benefits-of-foam-rolling/! Blessings!

Wishing you Strength with your pace and Clarity on your path, Nadirah A. Shakir

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