Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Walls

I was leafing through John Jerome's Elements of Effort last night, a book every runner should own. Jerome had the gift of being able to articulate the subtle complexities of a seemingly simple activity in the most impactful of ways. I was thinking about running goals--"racing" yourself and others and such--here's a tidbit:

"There's a benefit to be gained from racing that is not often mentioned. It gives you an easy familiarity with your own capacities, also known as limits. You develop the ability to discern, subjectively, not only the level of effort at which improvement starts but also the level at which it starts to turn sour. A feel for that subtle switchover point from gain to loss.

Racing, and the training for it, gives you a comfortable sense of the size of the room within which your efforts are reasonable and effective. It shows you where the walls are."

2 comments:

angie's pink fuzzy said...

That sums up exactly why I love running. I even use the same words - it gives me walls. And then that spills over into the rest of my life, and makes everything feel better - I feel more confident, focused and capable.

dirt_trail_runner said...

i agree. and john jerome ruled! great writer/runner.