Thursday, April 17, 2008

Take It And Run Thursday: The Little Things

It’s funny. It generally doesn’t take much to get me psyched up and motivated to run. Why, then, am I now finding it so difficult to describe what it is that inspires me? Most of the runners I know have definitive sources of inspiration they turn to when they start to falter . . . perhaps a loved one who has passed, a friend who has fought injury or illness, or a past obstacle they themselves have overcome. When I try to think of one, however, I always seem to draw a blank. Sure I have loved ones who have suffered . . . I’ve also overcome plenty of adversity in my own life. For some reason, though, I just don’t seem to associate any of those people/events with inspiration for my running.

So what exactly is it that motivates me? When I really think about it, I realize that it’s the little things that truly inspire me. They generally come up spontaneously, and luckily, right when I need them the most: An impromptu children’s soccer scrimmage going on in the park; a friendly runner smiling and waving hello as I pass; an adorable puppy, thrilled to be out for a walk; a fallen biker getting right back on his or her bike.

While these simple happenings may seem insignificant to those people who have “real” sources of inspiration, they’re very real to me (and I appreciate them very much!). You see, in my crazy-busy everyday life, I often forget to enjoy the fact that I’m alive. This seems to be a common disease amongst us New Yorkers—we’re always scurrying around, constantly in a rush. Since I’ve begun running again, I’ve come to realize that I’m far more likely to have mini-“aha moments” when out on a run (thanks for the phrase, Oprah!). You know what I’m talking about . . . the moments where you can’t help but recognize that life is good. I think part of my inspiration for running is nothing more than the desire to experience these moments. After all, the more I run, the more likely I am to be rewarded with another one! And who doesn’t love being reminded that, yes, they are indeed alive . . . and yes, life is also pretty damn good!

Well, and hey—if all else fails—there will always be “Rudy.” How could you not be inspired by that movie? I saw it approximately 5,342 times during undergrad, and it still gets me every time!


The Laminator said...

I live in New York? Really? Oh yeah, I do. Nice post, Irish. And I love "Rudy" too, especially that dialogue between the janitor and Rudy when Rudy wanted to quit the football team..."Look at you, you're 5 foot nothing, a hundred and nothing, you're on one of the finest football programs in the nation..." I love that speech!

Amy@RunnersLounge said...

I also love to live for the hundred small perfect moments of a run. And I would add The Rookie, Invincible, St Ralph and the rest of those movies to the list. I am a sucker for a happy ending.