Thursday, February 3, 2011

I am a Runner?

It is behavior not intentions that make us who we are. Very recently I came to the realization I am a runner. The fact that this is a  sudden revelation is startling as I have been running regularly since January 2004 (with two exceptions: time off before and after my brain surgery and then during my third pregnancy). Why should this concept be such an epiphany? Although my preformance is mediocre by any objective standard; to consider myself a novice is not founded in reality.  Having touted the non-judgmental space of my running (opting out of a  preoccupation with stats: time, distance, place or pace) has been a classic case of Reaction Formation (see Defense Mechanisms Anna Freud).  I consciously denied 'judgment' precisely because I discounted my effort almost entirely. In fact the only anchor I had to legitimize my running was that I chose to run marathon and therefore had the credential of marathoner. To consider myself as a runner is revolutionary indeed.

So how is it that I this average or below average runner has been so preoccupied with this sport or recreational activity. I suppose it could simply be defined as a hobby and yet it has transformed my outlook and approach to many aspects of my life. Mediocrity being unacceptable but my reality was veiled beneath the banner of the marathon. I realize that I have vested more time and energy on this effort then on my professional aspirations which shifted course about ten years ago only to become a experiment in lip service and nothingness.

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