See all of those blank lines above? That’s basically what I think about. Nothing. Nothing much, anyways.
I see these blog posts about all of the wonderful, inspirational, touching, deep, introspective or just plain funny thoughts folks have while running and, I got to tell you, it doesn’t happen for me. I’m like the guy who can’t ever decipher the hidden picture in one of those 3D stereograms no matter how relaxed and “unfocused” I get. Everyone else is laughing or remarking about ‘how neat’ it is but I stand there with a confused, wrinkled brow staring at the jumble of geometric patterns like a unicorn is giving birth to a midget. The next time I see the hidden image in one of those photos (like the one shown below) will be the first time.
I’d really like to get some serious thinking done as I while away the miles and minutes (and sometimes hours) but, instead, my brain is too connected to the here and now. I’m running. What am I thinking about when I’m running? Well, I’m thinking about how I’m running…how many miles have passed….how is my pace…why am I so tired…why aren’t I tired I feel great…I shouldn’t have worn that extra layer…if I can go x amount of minutes next mile I can average x amount of time…after this, my next run is only X miles…etc.
Okay, occasionally when I run past my filly’s school, I might think I wonder how she did on that math test and is she eating tater tots right now? I hope she hasn’t told a teacher off today (always a threat). Fleeting thoughts…gone with the next chirp from Garmin. These simple distractions float in and out constantly. Hey, there’s a car…it needs a new paint job. Or, I wonder if they’ll pave this road next summer and I’ll have to reroute. Or, commonly, SQUIRREL!
There are things I’d like to think about. Family finances are a constant source of thought when I’m not running. Books, I like those. I’ve read some good, thought-provoking ones too. Work? I’ve tried. Maybe I can solve an issue with one of my work projects by thinking it through while I run. Yes, maybe, until beep! there goes Garmin and I’m off thinking about my pace, my race goals, my running form, etc. I’ve tried so hard to force myself to think about something – anything -other than actual running that my inner voice has scolded my concentration when my mind inevitably wanders. Ever yell at yourself from the inside? It’s weird. You look around and wonder if anyone else heard.
I guess I can’t multi-task. Coincidentally, this regularly appears on my performance evaluations as well so it should be no surprise. (Nor do I “get along with others” but that’s not what this post is about.)
Nope. It doesn’t happen for me. I’m glad it happens for you, if it does, as it seems like a nice way to pass the time during a run. I’m a one trick pony. I can’t see the hidden picture within a picture. I’m not going to analyze all of the symbolism in Ellison’s Invisible Man. Work problems will have to remain problems until I get back.
What do I think about while running?
Well, running. And maybe that squirrel over there. It sure is a little cold out here. I wonder if we’ll get a mild winter. Only four more miles to go.
What’s my pace? Can I go faster next mile?
Here’s a poll that you can answer anonymously. Are you a non-thinker like me? Let’s stand together. Be strong. Don’t be afraid….
Yesterday, five miles beating the storm! About two inches had fallen. I managed 2 x 800 around the covered track and with a nasty headwind for part. Both 800's in the 2:55 range which will be unacceptable in a month or so but, with this weather, I'll work with it. 5 miles @ 7:07 pace.