In five days time I will be pounding the streets of London in my third and final marathon. This has been by far the worst run up to a marathon I’ve had. Training through the winter months has been really tough. I’ve suffered with asthma and as a result have done 98% of my training on the treadmill.
On my first attempt at 18 miles, some 4 weeks ago, my knee started to hurt 16 miles in. I’ve got quite a good pain threshold, but by 17 miles I was having to run/walk as it kept locking. Four weeks on and it’s not much better. I’ve been resting it as much as I can, doing the prescribed exercises to give it a chance of holding out, but with 5 days to go, I’ve got about as much chance of it behaving as we have parliament stopping the arguing and working together!
It got me thinking, a great hobby of mine. I’ve always believed things will work out. Lately my resolve has been knocked tremendously, but I’ve found mindfulness and it has brought me back down to a state of calmness.
I’m going to go off course a little here, but I honestly think everyone should read Ruby Wax’s latest book ‘How to be Human’. This book caused me to ask more questions than it answered, until the last chapter on forgiveness. I wasn’t going to read this chapter. At the time I read it, I was struggling badly with hurt and wasn’t in a place to forgive or even read a chapter about forgiveness, but I did. The neuroscientist in the book explains about the work a psychologist did in the early sixties. Dr Stanley Milgram wanted to understand the psychological defences that Nazi leadership used during the Nuremburg trials. You can read it in detail in the book, but basically a group of people were asked to deliver electric shocks to strangers if they got a question wrong. Sometimes the level was life threatening, but still the volunteers did it. Every time they hesitated, they would here a voice saying “please continue”. The outcome of the study was that the volunteers would do anything asked of them because the doctor said he would take full responsibility. We are tribal animals and tend to define people as in a group or out. This can happen at any time in any circumstance if the leader is able to whip up enough hatred for the out group. This is the story of my life!
Anyway back to always believing everything will work out. When we are sensitive about a subject, we see it everywhere. If we are happy, we tend to see the world through happier eyes. When we are sad, we see the sadness in the world.
On Sunday, I have the privilege to run with 40,000+ other runners who all have a story to tell as to why they are there. I know, without a shadow of a doubt I will meet at least one person to share the 26.2 mile route with. To support them when they hurt, to be supported when I find it tough. To laugh with, to cry with, to cross that finish line with.
As they say, the person you cross the starting line as, is not the same person at the finish.
All is as it should be #trust