Sunday, September 25, 2011

One Simple Turn

Last week, during my half marathon, there was this point where, had I turned left, it would have been a downhill, 3 mile run home.  Had I turned right, I would be faced with 7.1 more miles of hills and race path.

As I approached that turn, I thought long and hard about what choice I should make.  I was in a lot of pain.  My shoulder was hurting.  I was tired.  I was pretty sick of running.  It was HOT.  If I turned left, I could be done and on my couch in 30 minutes.  If I turned right, I was looking at 70 minutes of heat, hills, and pain.

Obviously, I turned right.

It came down to doing what I could live with, what would make me proud, what is right.  Sure,  if I turned left and took the easy way out, my shoulder wouldn't have hurt so bad, but I'd have an intensely burning, shitty feeling about myself, probably for years to come, as I consider the half that I dropped out of.   While turning left may have resulted in an easier path, it would have been a choice that haunted me for years, therefore, thereby not exactly being easy in the end.

And so again, I think about how running really is a metaphor for life in general.  How we run, is how we live. 

Sometimes, doing the right thing  and doing the hardest thing are actually the same thing.

Skating by on easy street, no thanks.  I'll turn right, climb the hills, feel the pain, and take the tears any day over laying down and surrendering to what feels better.  Because in the end, it's the hardest battles, the fiercest fights, and highest climbs that make life worth living.  Doing what's easy isn't living.  Looking at those hard choices, right in the eye, and then doing what's right may result in scars of the body and heart, but it's proof of a life...well lived.