What or why do we get up everyday, bathe, eat breakfast and go to work? What causes us to continually move forward? Is it in our DNA? Or, is it deeper that our genetic makeup?
When asked the above questions others have answered, "What's the alternative?" They got me there. So, I guess that's why I kept putting one foot in front of the other on a recent long and uncomfortable twenty-two mile training run. Even though the views of the newly landscaped Randall's Island are spectacular and the fall bloom of Central Park magnificent, I just couldn't get out of the question, "Why am I doing this?" (Resistance possibly?) Besides the obvious that I committed to run the NYC and Philadelphia marathons with two friends and that I like my runner's waist line, I was focused on the question of who has more courage, the finisher or the quitter: the survivor or the felo-de-se? I think that it takes a lot of courage to get up everyday and continue on in the face of adversity especially, in today's political and economic climates. So too does it take courage to move through debilitating depression and anxiety which, causes some to think and feel that the best option is to stop keeping on.
I do have mild irritation over the industrialized world's mantra of work hard, amass more. The empty and commercial driven "just do it's" and the get aggressive corporate messages. (Try "assertive" instead of aggressive.)
I can't tell you exactly why I keep on keepin' on. One of the reasons is the post run benefits. After an ice bath, stretching and a power plate of pasta, I sit and wait for the wonderful calming endorphins to kick in where I enter into the world of Bliss. These free wheeling, natural chemicals make me feel like I'm floating on a Whitman "greenshine" pool in a rubber raft without a care in the world. And I guess, this is why I do it six days per week. Do I have courage or is it to keep the scary mooglies at bay? I don't know. I do know that there is something that keeps us humans moving forward, striving and driving and whether it's self-preservation or fear of the "alternative" I'm going to keep putting one foot in front of the other.