Thursday, 29 March 2012

Love Running

Logo Used with Permission

I'm ashamed to admit that exercise and I parted ways over 10 years ago. It wasn't a dramatic falling out - more of a gradual drifting apart in the increasing busy-ness of everyday living. Periodically I would espouse these grandiose plans: "I'm going to take up rowing"; "I'm going to join a netball team again"; "I'm going to go running". Most ideas never saw the light of day, but I would occasionally manage to drag myself out to jog round a local park for all of about 10 minutes before the boredom set in and I'd inevitably call it quits.

Needless to say, I don't love running. 

With that in mind, I signed up to run 10k for three different causes being collectively supported by the church community I belong to. The initiative 'Love Running' aims to see hundreds of people achieve significant change locally and abroad through taking part in our city's annual sponsored run on behalf of a number of charities. The basic concept is literally love in action. Which is all very well, good and inspiring but not the whole reason why I signed up.

I signed up because I'm in a position where it's incredibly easy for me to live a comfortable life. Not a perfect, niggle-free life, but one that is mercifully untouched by real conflict and calamity on any level: physical, emotional. There isn't much that I need to really put myself out to achieve in my day to day life: I don't need to walk miles for water, I don't need to sell street papers like the Big Issue from dawn until dusk because if not I won't scrape together enough change for overnight accommodation.

Being comfortable is no bad thing. And from a position of comfort, it is still possible to be generous in effective ways: foregoing the fiver I might have spent on a magazine and donating that instead, or the kindnesses that have no financial cost but are unequaled in their worth. Even so, for me at this particular point in time and for a largely unknown reason, I felt like it would be a good idea to actually put myself out. 

And so, together with my husband, we are paying. We are paying in joining fees, we are paying in training time, we are paying in effort. Blood, sweat and tears are all part of the equation (on my part at least!). In doing so, we hope to raise £500 for the people here and elsewhere in the world who have no choice but to pay a huge price just to keep going in their day-to-day living; the people who give every ounce of strength to keep treading water and not be drowned by overwhelming circumstances.

My capacity to endure the unfamiliar amounts of exercise I'm putting my body through is increasing over time. But when I (frequently) want to stop I'm trying to remind myself to run in honour of other people's perseverance and for the privilege of being able to alleviate some of the things they struggle against.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...