Brooklyn, Mesquite Canyon, Moab, Portballintrae, Tuscany + Vancouver Island
Plus: How to exercise mindfully + a conversation with Kara Goucher
I got an interesting lesson in knowing vs. believing this weekend.
Yesterday, I ran, like I always do, along the trail that winds alongside the Chattahoochee River near my home here in Atlanta. I’ve been working on being more consistent; not pushing myself to run really long distances, but to make sure I’m running 3-4 times a week, every week.
Coming off an injury in the spring, running again hasn’t been easy. Our bodies obey the law of inertia, I think, and when they’ve been at rest, they seem to want to remain at rest. (Mine does, anyway!) So when you put them back in motion, they can resist it pretty fiercely.
But this week, running felt easier than it has in months. I’ve stopped feeling every single step and started paying attention to the world around me when I’m running, noticing the flock of geese all taking off at the same time from the water, or the snake coiled around the branch of the tree as I run underneath it. (Yes, I really saw one!)
In the back of my mind, the little voice of resistance that tries to get me to stop running has started to quiet down too. Rationally, I know I can run, and run a long way. But I haven’t believed it in a while. This week, I finally started to; I have that feeling again that “you know, I can do this.”
It takes time to get to that place, I’m learning (again). You don’t get well by taking a bottle of medicine all at one time, and you don’t get better at running by going on a single run. And I have to re-learn that every time I take a break, it seems. I have to teach it to myself all over again.
Funny how our minds work, isn’t it?
Anyway, I hope you’re having a lovely Sunday wherever you are in the world — keep in touch and let me know how your running is going.
Races you might love running
Portballintrae, Northern Ireland | Saturday, September 24, 2022
A 60 million-year-old basalt rock formation, made up of some 40,000 column-like hexagonal rocks that stand locked together against the waves that crash along the shoreline of Northern Ireland’s northern coast, is where you’ll run this race that organizers say is one of the most scenic in the world. The half marathon — like the full marathon and 40-mile ultra — follows a point-to-point route along the area known as the Causeway Coast, passing by tall cliffs and beaches that look out onto sweeping views of the bays here along the shoreline. If you want to take it a little more slowly, the race also offers a 26.2-mile walk that takes you along the same route as the full marathon, including a walk right up to the rocks of the Giant’s Causeway itself.
£40 and up | Sign up here
Brooklyn, N.Y. | Saturday, October 15, 2022
A gorgeous, three-loop run that unfolds entirely within the leafy, tree-lined confines of Brooklyn’s Prospect Park, this run features three loops around East and West Drive inside the iconic 585-acre park, designed back in the 1860s by the legendary landscape architect Frederick Law Olmstead. You’ll get to take everything the park has to offer in as you run around it — from its lakes, trails and meadows to its carousel, sea lion pool and zoo, and the Prospect Park Audubon Center. The terrain for the race is almost entirely flat and run on paved surfaces throughout, and you’ll finish along Center Drive in the center of the park.
$80 and up | Sign up here