At one time I was doing yoga, trying to find a space to meditate. Although noticeable progress, settle in the ‘here and now’ is not always me it was easy. In contrast, when I started running long distances in solitude, at a steady pace, I was able to calm the whirlwind of thoughts spinning in my mind. At some point, I recognized the consciousness of the ‘here and now’ obtaining states of meditation are stable and deep that alleviated my stress and anxiety.
The experts say that by quieting the swirling mental and emotional activates the principles of mindfulness awareness. Who has never raced, you won’t understand how it is that you can do a workout, a meditative experience. The idea is not new. In 1974, in the boom of running in the US, published the book The Zen of running, Fred Rohé, in which it is already mentioned that feeling of running with the mind in white, which was called meditation in motion.
I am not an expert on the subject, what I can relate is my own experience. The first kilometres of the deal to warm up my body and clear the mind. Then focus my attention on what I’m doing: running. I am present and focused on that single activity, paying attention to the movements of my body and focusing on inspire and breathe out. After a few minutes of steady rhythm, the mental dialogue internal begins to decrease, and with them meditate in motion.
This state does not reach always: on many occasions, if I run with music, this occupies my whole attention; the other, the environment catches me. Endurance races require perseverance, discipline and learn to fight against the fatigue and the pain. Meditation is also an exercise that demands consistency, discipline and willpower, with small gains and a lot of practice.
I have read somewhere that both the meditation as the running are two forms of ‘addiction’ positive. Both help to develop the self-confidence, self-control, acceptance, and, since then, the health. The feeling that causes the running is bodily, tangible and concrete. Meditation, in contrast, is more difficult to define, and it is seen in the serenity, peace and emotional tranquility that one can achieve.
The book why we run. The scientific causes of the wrath of the marathons, Martín De Ambrosio and Alfredo Ves Losada, points out that “running is a journey forward, and also inward. And like any exercise of introspection, it has its benefits and its risks.” Or as you wrote Nietzsche, with his peculiar style: “If you look too long during an abyss, the abyss also looks into you.”