Running Around the Block: The Small Choices that Change Your Life

For over two decades, I self-identified as a runner. No matter the weather, my emotional state, my schedule, I fit a run into my day. On average I was running 6-8 miles a day. Sometime around graduate school, also known as my thirties, I discovered power yoga. Running, which was causing knee problems anyway, left my life. I still think about running and every once in a while I lace up my shoes and go for a run. Always, I love the sound of my feet hitting the earth, the way sweat beads up, my rhythmic breathing and then something happens. Either my knees start to hurt or I start to hurt because I went too far too fast. I get discouraged because I can no longer run like I used to. No matter if it has been a decade since I ran regularly. And then I put my shoes away for the next few months.

This is how most people attempt life. Many people jump into a sport, a profession, a class, a hobby with all the best intentions but unable to see results soon enough, fast enough, they give up. I am guilty of this. Are you?

“What you do ON the mat, you do OFF the mat.”

In yoga, there is a saying “what you do on the mat, you do off the mat.” If you daydream, distract yourself, fidget, tense up, berate yourself, judge others, compare yourself to others, push too hard, leave for the bathroom during an uncomfortable pose, you are distracting yourself in your day-to-day life. As a result you are not experiencing your life at the optimal frequency. To live at your optimal frequency is to raise your level of energy. People who have low energy are less likely to have the drive to forge meaningful relationships, engage their partners mentally/emotionally/sexually, are less likely to take care of their bodies, and work consistently to make their dreams a reality. Why? Because manifesting desire into reality takes conscious work. It takes obsession, it takes a constant drive, it takes shutting the door on toxic people and naysayers. To turn your vision into reality takes persistence, dedication, an unstoppable confidence, and the hardest thing of all: overcoming your own doubts and limiting beliefs. We all have them.

Recently, I started running 10 minutes a day. Only 10 minutes! But I do it every day. When I don’t want to run, I remind myself I am only running around the block. I CAN run for 10 minutes. I don’t feel any pressure. I put on my shoes, run around the block, come home. I feel great! Maybe I will increase my time and my mileage. Maybe I won’t. That doesn’t concern me. What does, is that I am doing it.

Your Everyday Actions

Everyday rituals create your life. Do you choose to watch TV instead of read that book or work on that book you have been wanting to write? Do you roll over in bed or do you get up and meditate? Your choices make your life. You do not need to make big changes or big actions to make a difference in the quality of your life. Start doing the little actions towards your big dreams and I promise, your energy will change. You will feel empowered, alive, motivated, and good. This may not happen right away. Stick with it and it will.