Walking, Not Running

Last year I ran the Austin Half Marathon with Team FX. The Professor ran the full and he did quite well. I did ok, in the sense that I finished and I made it and I was very pleased with that, but running itself never was easy, never felt natural, and did a bit of a number on my ankles.

So this year I’m staying with the team, as is The Prof back with his marathoning, only I’m going to walk the 13.1 instead of running it.

This is a hard choice for a couple of reasons, mostly ego. I like walking more than running, certainly. Walking is a compassionate exercise. It’s natural to me and I can get lost in thought or podcasts and just…walk. Running was never so. I know folks who find running to be very meditative but for whatever reason, I could not get to that place.

Runners tend to be competitive and I’ve noticed a hierarchy of sorts, 10 K to Half to Full to Ultras. Walking isn’t really part of that particular schema, perhaps its considered not quite hard core enough, and occasional commentary I’ve heard is “Walking is just fine!” (and I hope the message inherent is not that it isn’t) but that’s ok with me. It is just fine.

One thing I’ve been pleased with about myself in my life is that peer pressure hasn’t really worked well on me. If I don’t like something, I don’t like it. If running hurts and isn’t natural, then after a good try I don’t see the need to force it.

Walking for the Austin Children’s Shelter, for Team FX, for the community of it all, for health and meditation and as part of a huge group of people, that’s enough for me and I’m looking forward to the training.

First walk with the team? August 11th! Contact me if you are interested in joining up!


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